Dedication

In youth I longed to paint
The loveliness I saw;
And yet by dire constraint
I had to study Law.
But now all that is past,
And I have no regret,
For I am free at last
Law to forget.

To beauty newly born
With brush and tube I play;
And though my daubs you scorn,
I'll learn to paint some day.
When I am eighty old,
Maybe I'll better them,
And you may yet behold
A gem.

Old Renoir used to paint,
Brush strapped to palsied hand;
His fervour of a saint
How I can understand.
My joy is my reward,
And though you gently smile,
Grant me to fumble, Lord,
A little while!

by Robert William Service

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