Certain Maxims of Hafiz II

From “The Spike:”, the Victoria College Review for October 1902′

(After Kipling’s “Certain Maxims of Haviz“)



If the words are easily spoken, and students tender and green,
Does the bashful young man hang back for the deep-seated wisdom of age?

If the girls look on admiring, their sweetest smiles to be seen,
He suits his sense to their brains, the young and resourceful sage.


Who rule the ballot, my friend—to them shall we bow the knee,
Make you peace with the women—they boss the poll at V.C.


To win then be furnished and groomed with a collar that’s likely to throttle,
Comb your hair, curl your “mou” ’tis best, for authority, see Aristotle.


In casting your jokes, remember before they are finally rigged.
No trouble’s so wasteful as that which is spent on a joke that cannot be “twigged.”


But when humour unseen is attempted, ’tis always best in the main.
If you value the joke you have “swatted,” to stop and explain.


‘Tis said that the brave gain the fair, that discretion becometh the brave;
And ’tis true that a good speech will lack neither judgment nor “spunk,”
Wherefore consider your subject once—sober—discretion to save,
Then, that boldness your councils may enter, consider a second time-drunk.


To make of yourself a fool, oft wants both courage and brain,
Be a nuisance to kind-hearted friends, and to enemies be as a pain.


‘Tis good to be good, they say, and we know that you would if you could,
But be good within limits, young man, and be not, I implore you, Toogood.


But of all the good maxims, I say, of debaters—I’ve said it before—

This one is the pick,
Get to know what the audience wants you to say before you get on to floor,
And pile it on thick.

Note.—The Editors wish it to be distinctly understood that they are not responsible for the moral tone of Hafiz.

* A guardian, governor, preserver, or professor.