I understand the quotation from poem "If" by Rudyard Kipling, but I don't understand the meaning of the word "turn" in its context

If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew to serve your turn long after they are gone

1 Answer 1


Serve one's/its turn is an idiomatic expression that means:

  • Be useful or helpful:

    • now that they have served their turn, cut some of them out suppressing his ire would hardly serve his turn at this juncture


  • it's a passage about how a person's willpower can win over the weaknesses of the flesh.

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