Thomas Hardy

(2 June 1840 – 11 January 1928 / Dorchester / England)

At the War Office, London (Affixing the Lists of Killed and Wounded: December, 1899)


I

Last year I called this world of gain-givings
The darkest thinkable, and questioned sadly
If my own land could heave its pulse less gladly,
So charged it seemed with circumstance whence springs
   The tragedy of things.

II

Yet at that censured time no heart was rent
Or feature blanched of parent, wife, or daughter
By hourly blazoned sheets of listed slaughter;
Death waited Nature's wont; Peace smiled unshent
   From Ind to Occident.

Submitted: Saturday, January 04, 2003

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