Thomas Hardy as Poet


The purveyor of the largest number of the most completely depressing novels written in English (note, by number we eliminate Malcolm Lowry, and by Enlgish we eliminate Celine and Zola) also wrote some of the most depressing poetry in English. Here's an example. Down, but lovely.

At a Lunar Eclipse
Thomas Hardy

Thy shadow, Earth, from Pole to Central Sea,
Now steals along upon the Moon's meek shine
In even monochrome and curving line
Of imperturbable serenity.

How shall I link such sun-cast symmetry
With the torn troubled form I know as thine,
That profile, placid as a brow divine,
With continents of moil and misery?

And can immense Mortality but throw
So small a shade, and Heaven's high human scheme
Be hemmed within the coasts yon arc implies?

Is such the stellar gauge of earthly show,
Nation at war with nation, brains that teem,
Heroes, and women fairer than the skies?

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This page contains a single entry by Steven Riddle published on September 14, 2002 8:32 AM.

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