If (Only)

If you can hold your finger from it’s pressing
To send that angry retweet you’d regret
And read through all those posts that Facebook shows you
And not reply ‘You wankers!’ to the set
If you can speak with calmness to the person
Who answers you on the call centre phone
And not abuse them with your righteous fury
But speak in a sweet, reasonable tone.

If you can sit in endless blocks of traffic
Wait for commuter trains that never come
And neither swear at your fellow road user
Nor blame the helpful staff for how trains run
If you can face the checkout out queue at Tesco
As if you were relaxing in the park
Then you, my son, have got this damned life sorted
But stuff that grown-up nonsense for a lark!

E.M. Swift-Hook

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