Robert William Service

Here you will find the Poem Vain Venture of poet Robert William Service

Vain Venture

To have a business of my own
 With toil and tears,
I wore my fingers to the bone
 For weary years.
With stoic heart, for sordid gold
 In patient pain
My life and liberty I sold
 For others gain.
I scrimped and scraped, as cent by cent
 My savings grew;
I found a faded shop for rent,
 Made it like new.
Above the door the paint was dry
 Where glowed my name:
I waited there for folks to buy--
 But no one came.

Now I am back where I began:
 Myself I sell.
I grovel to a greedy man,
 And life is hell.
An empty shop of bankrupt shame
 I pass before,
Seeing my bitter, bleary name
 Above the door.