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The White Man’s Burden, 2013

whitemansburdencrop1 [1]291 words

French translation here [2]

With thanks to Rudyard Kipling’s original [3]

Take up the White Man’s burden —
Send forth the best ye breed
To heathen lands and peoples,
And spread the gospel creed:
The holy writ of Freedom
For each bodily demand,
The Human Rights liturgy,
And the Market’s ghostly hand.

Take up the White Man’s burden
(Which never fell to earth) —
With bullets, bombs, and lucre —
To bring to painful birth
The global constitution
Which all men should attain;
Go seek another’s profit,
And work another’s gain.

Take up the White Man’s burden —
No tawdry show of pride;
Like toiling serf or sweeper,
Your ancestry deride.
Those who first bore your burden
Are everywhere reviled,
And whites below your standing
Are half-devil and half-child.

Take up the White Man’s burden —
Fling open Europe’s door:
Let new-caught, sullen peoples
Supplant your native poor;
And when your goal is nearest,
The end for others sought,
Watch old-caught, sullen voters
Bring all your hopes to nought.

whitemansburdencrop3 [4]Take up the White Man’s burden —
Have done with “they” and “we” —
Old duties to your nation,
And others’ sovereignty;
Insist the world’s a cauldron
Where all races merge and flow;
And dwell not on the humour
That White Men alone think so.

Take up the White Man’s burden —
Ye dare not stoop to less
Than old conceit and humbug,
Cloaked in new humbleness:
The sickly moral perfume
Where stink of Profit roams;
The lust to build God’s Kingdom
On wrecks of others’ homes.

Take up the White Man’s burden —
And reap what you have sown:
The scorn of foreign peoples,
The hatred of your own;
You’re doomed to rude awakening,
But if you would be free,
Throw off the White Man’s burden —
And a man of Europe be!