Nonfiction > Lionel Strachey, et al., eds. > The World’s Wit and Humor > Russian, Scandinavian, etc.
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The World’s Wit and Humor: An Encyclopedia in 15 Volumes.  1906.
Vol. XIV: Russian—Scandinavian—Miscellaneous
 
The Soldier
By Nikolay Nekrasov (1821–1877)
 
From “Who Lives Happily in Russia?”

THEN up there comes a veteran,
  With medals on his breast;
He scarcely lives, but yet he strives
  To drink with all the rest.
“A lucky man am I!” he cries,        5
  And thus to prove the fact he tries:
“In what consists a soldier’s luck?
  Pray, listen while I tell:
In twenty fights or more I’ve been,
  And yet I never fell;        10
And, what is more, in peaceful times
  Full health I never knew.
Yet, all the same, I have contrived
  Not to give Death his due.
Also, for sins both great and small,        15
  Full many a time they’ve me
With sticks unmercifully flogged;
  Yet I’m alive, you see!”
 
 
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