Great Heart

On January 6th, 1919, Theodore Roosevelt passed away from out world.


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It was ninety six years ago that one of the greatest, truest Americans died. His death was a shock, not because of suddenness, but a realization that his world had ended, what had been new was now old, the world was changing and the roaring twenties was soon to dawn.

Rudyard Kipling said of Roosevelt’s death, “It is as though Bunyan’s Mr. Great-Heart had died in the midst of his pilgrimage, for he was the greatest proved American of his generation.”

Great Heart

Concerning brave Captains
Our age hath made known
For all men to honour,
One standeth alone,
Of whom, o’er both oceans,
Both peoples may say:
“Our realm is diminished
With Great-Heart away.”

TR rough rider

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In purpose unsparing,
In action no less,
The labours he praised
He would seek and profess
Through travail and battle,
At hazard and pain. . . .
And our world is none the braver
Since Great-Heart was ta’en!


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Plain speech with plain folk,
And plain words for false things,
Plain faith in plain dealing
‘Twixt neighbours or kings,
He used and he followed,
However it sped. . . .
Oh, our world is none more honest
Now Great-Heart is dead!


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The heat of his spirit
Struck warm through all lands;
For he loved such as showed
‘Emselves men of their hands;
In love, as in hate,
Paying home to the last. . . .
But our world is none the kinder
Now Great-Heart hath passed!

tr elephant

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Hard-schooled by long power,
Yet most humble of mind
Where aught that he was
Might advantage mankind.
Leal servant, loved master,
Rare comrade, sure guide. . . .
Oh, our world is none the safer
Now Great-Heart hath died!

tr victory

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Let those who would handle
Make sure they can wield
His far-reaching sword
And his close-guarding shield:
For those who must journey
Henceforward alone
Have need of stout convoy
Now Great-Heart is gone.

– Great Heart by Rudyard Kipling

Though the age of Roosevelt, and the form of Progressive Politics he espoused is over, we still need men to take up his sword and his shield. Any who should endeavor to pick up his tools, whether it be the Presidency, his pen as an author, or even his commanding voice as an orator; they should do it for the benefit of others, as he did.


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