Take up the Asian burden—

Send forth the best you breed—

Go, bind your children in college

And ignore the cries until they succeed;

To wait in heavy harness,

Upon that dreaded report card—

Expected of these peoples,

To never let their grades be marred.


Take up the Asian burden—

With patience you shall wait,

To pass all exams with finesse

And have all of your answers be elaborate;

By long hours and sleepless nights,

The goal becomes quite clear,

To pass all classes with distinction

And become a doctor or engineer.


Take up the Asian burden—

Let the wars against failing increase—

Fill the head full with formulas,

Let the E's on the report card cease;

This is the end so many others have sought—

And when your goal is nearest,

Watch a missed assignment

Bring all grades crashing down to the lowest.


Take up the Asian burden—

Dare not pause to rest—

Do not let your grades slip

Or let the others be the best.

Study with all your might,

And study with all your will,

For the reward will be A's

And you have climbed the last hill.


Take up the Asian burden!

Have done with the days of your youth—

The scholarship from Harvard,

The admires from others in the booth;

Comes now, to search your education

Through all the years of hardship,

The years of studying and cramming,

The rest of your life will be a whip.