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IF -poem- (Rudyard Kipling)

IF -poem-
Activity Fill in the Gaps
Activity Fill in the Gaps

"If", the most famous poem by Rudyard Kipling.

Rudyard Kipling's (1865-1936) inspirational poem 'If–' first appeared in his collection 'Rewards and Fairies' in 1909. The poem 'If-' is inspirational, motivational, and a set of rules for 'grown-up' living. Kipling's 'If–' contains mottos and maxims for life, and the poem is also a blueprint for personal integrity, behaviour and self-development. 'If–' is perhaps even more relevant today than when Kipling wrote it, as an ethos and a personal philosophy. Lines from Kipling's 'If–' appear over the player's entrance to Wimbledon's Centre Court - a poignant reflection of the poem's timeless and inspiring quality.

The beauty and elegance of 'If–' contrasts starkly with Rudyard Kipling's largely tragic and unhappy life. He was starved of love and attention and sent away by his parents; beaten and abused by his foster mother; and a failure at a public school which sought to develop qualities that were completely alien to Kipling. In later life the deaths of two of his children also affected Kipling deeply.

Rudyard Kipling achieved fame quickly, based initially on his first stories and poems written in India (he returned there after College), and his great popularity with the British public continued despite subsequent critical reaction to some of his more conservative work, and critical opinion in later years that his poetry was superficial and lacking in depth of meaning.

Significantly, Kipling turned down many honours offered to him including a knighthood, Poet Laureate and the Order of Merit, but in 1907 he accepted the Nobel Prize for Literature. Kipling's wide popular appeal survives through other works, notably The Jungle Book (1894) the novel Kim (1901), and Just So Stories (1902).


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Write the suitable word/s inside the gaps to complete the sentence. Use the -TAB- key on your computer keyboard to move from one box to the next.


Gapped text
If you can ____________________________ your head when all about you Are losing theirs and ____________________________ it on you; If you can ____________________________ yourself when all men ____________________________ you, But ____________________________ for their doubting too:
If you can wait and not be __________ by waiting, Or, being __________ about, don't __________ in lies, Or being hated don't give __________ to hating, And yet don't look too good, nor talk too __________;
If you can __________________---and not make dreams your __________________; If you can think---and not make thoughts your __________________, If you can meet with __________________ and __________________ And __________________ those two __________________ just the same.
If you can ______________ to hear the truth you've spoken ______________ by ______________ to make a trap for fools, Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken, And ______________ and build'em up with ______________-out tools;
If you can make one ____________________________ of all your winnings And risk it on one turn of ____________________________, And lose, and start again at your ____________________________, And never ____________________________ a word about your loss:
If you can __________ your heart and nerve and __________ To serve your __________ long after they are gone, And so hold on when there is nothing in you Except the __________ which says to them: "Hold on!"
If you can talk with ________________________ and keep your ________________________, Or walk with Kings---nor lose the ________________________, If neither ________________________ nor loving friends can hurt you, If all men ________________________ with you, but none too much
If you can fill the ______________________ minute With sixty seconds' worth of ______________________ run, Yours is the ______________________ and everything that's in it, And ---which is more--- you'll be a ______________________, my son!
Total number of items: 8

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