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The Centenarians

Written by: Robert William Service | Biography
 | Quotes (2) |
 I asked of ancient gaffers three
 The way of their ripe living,
And this is what they told to me
 Without Misgiving.

The First: 'The why I've lived so long,
 To my fond recollection
Is that for women, wine and song
 I've had a predilection.
Full many a bawdy stave I've sung
 With wenches of my choosing,
But of the joys that kept me young
 The best was boozing.'

The Second: 'I'm a sage revered
 Because I was a fool
And with the bourgeon of my beard
 I kept my ardour cool.
On health I have conserved my hold
 By never dissipating:
And that is why a hundred old
 I'm celebrating.'

The Third: 'The explanation I
 Have been so long a-olding,
Is that to wash I never try,
 Despite conjugal scolding.
I hate the sight of soap and so
 I seldom change my shirt:
Believe me, Brother, there is no
 Preservative like dirt.'

So there you have the reasons three
 Why age may you rejoice:
Booze, squalour and temerity,--
 Well, you may take your choice.
Yet let me say, although it may
 Your egoism hurt,
Of all the three it seems to me
 The best is DIRT.