Thomas Hardy Poems

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Thomas Hardy
Thomas Hardy, OM (2 June 1840 – 11 January 1928) was an English novelist, short story writer, and poet of the naturalist movement. The bulk of his work, set mainly in the semi-imaginary county of Wessex, delineates characters struggling against their passions and circumstances. Hardy's poetry, first published in his fifties, has come to be as well regarded as his novels, especially after The Movement of the 1950s and 60s. Thomas Hardy was born at Higher Bockhampton, a hamlet in the parish of Stinsford to the east of Dorchester in Dorset, England. His father worked as a stonemason and local builder. His mother was ambitious and well-read, supplementing his formal education, which ended at the age of 16 when he became apprenticed to John Hicks, a local architect. Hardy trained as an architect in Dorchester before moving to London in 1862. There he enrolled as a student at King’s College London. He won prizes from the Royal Institute of British Architects and the Architectural Association. He never truly felt at home in London and when he returned five years later to Dorset he decided to dedicate himself to writing. In 1870, while on an architectural mission to restore the parish church of St Juliot in Cornwall, Hardy met and fell in love with Emma Lavinia Gifford, whom he married in 1874. Although he later became estranged from his wife, her death in 1912 had a traumatic effect on him. He made a trip to Cornwall to revisit places linked with their courtship; his Poems 1912-13 explore his grief. In 1914, Hardy married his secretary Florence Dugdale, 40 years his junior, whom he had met in 1905. However, Hardy remained preoccupied with Emma's sudden death, and tried to overcome his remorse by writing poetry. Hardy fell ill with pleurisy in December 1927 and died in January 1928, having dictated his final poem to his wife on his deathbed. His funeral, on 16 January at Westminster Abbey, proved a controversial occasion: Hardy, his family and friends had wished him to be buried at Stinsford in the same grave as his first wife, Emma. However, his executor, Sir Sydney Carlyle Cockerell, insisted he be placed in the abbey's Poets' Corner. A compromise was reached whereby his heart was buried at Stinsford with Emma, and his ashes in Poets' Corner. Shortly after Hardy's death, the executors of his estate burnt his letters and notebooks. Twelve records survived, one of them containing notes and extracts of newspaper stories from the 1820s. Research into these provided insight into how Hardy kept track of them and how he used them in his later work. Hardy's work was admired by many authors, amongst them D.H. Lawrence and Virginia Woolf. The writer Robert Graves, in his autobiography Goodbye to All That, recalls meeting Hardy in Dorset in the early 1920s. Hardy received Graves and his newly married wife warmly, and was encouraging about the younger author's work. In 1910, Hardy was awarded the Order of Merit. Hardy's cottage at Bockhampton and Max Gate in Dorchester are owned by the National Trust.

the knight's tomb
Where is the grave of Sir Arthur O'Kellyn?
Where may the grave of that good man be?--
By t... [read poem]
fragment 2: i know 'tis but a dream, yet feel more anguish
I know 'tis but a Dream, yet feel more anguish
Than if 'twere Truth. It has been often so:... [read poem]
the rime of the ancient mariner (text of 1834)

It is an ancient Mariner,
And he stoppeth one of three.... [read poem]
fragment 10: the three sorts of friends
Though friendships differ endless in degree ,
The sorts , methinks, may be reduce... [read poem]
fragment 1: sea-ward, white gleaming thro' the busy scud
Sea-ward, white gleaming thro' the busy scud
With arching Wings, the sea-mew o'er my head
... [read poem]
the good, great man
"How seldom, friend! a good great man inherits
Honour or wealth with all his worth and pain... [read poem]
inscription for a fountain on a heath
This Sycamore, oft musical with bees,--
Such tents the Patriarchs loved! O long unharmed
M... [read poem]
fragment 6: the moon, how definite its orb!
The Moon, how definite its orb!
Yet gaze again, and with a steady gaze--
'Tis there indeed... [read poem]
If but some vengeful god would call to me
From up the sky, and laugh: "Thou suffering thing,... [read poem]
constancy to an ideal object
Since all that beat about in Nature's range,
Or veer or vanish; why should'st thou remain
... [read poem]
kubla khan
In Xanadu did Kubla Khan
A stately pleasure-dome decree:
Where Alph, the sacred river, ran... [read poem]
dejection: an ode
Late, late yestreen I saw the new Moon,
With the old Moon in her arms;
An... [read poem]
love's apparition and evanishment: an allegoric romance
Like a lone Arab, old and blind,
Some caravan had left behind,
Who sits beside a ruin'd we... [read poem]
work without hope
All Nature seems at work. Slugs leave their lair--
The bees are stirring--birds are on the wing... [read poem]
the nightingale
A Conversation Poem. April, 1798.

No cloud, no relique of the sunken day
Distingui... [read poem]
this lime-tree bower my prison
Well, they are gone, and here must I remain,
This lime-tree bower my prison! I have lost
B... [read poem]
All thoughts, all passions, all delights,
Whatever stirs this mortal frame,
All are but mi... [read poem]
on donne's poetry
With Donne, whose muse on dromedary trots,
Wreathe iron pokers into true-love knots;
Rhyme... [read poem]
hymn before sun-rise, in the vale of chamouni
Hast thou a charm to stay the morning-star
In his steep course? So long he seems to pause
... [read poem]
youth and age
Verse, a breeze mid blossoms straying,
Where Hope clung feeding, like a bee--
Both were mi... [read poem]
'Tis the middle of night by the castle clock,
And the owls have awakened the crowing cock;... [read poem]
fragment 3: come, come thou bleak december wind
Come, come thou bleak December wind,
And blow the dry leaves from the tree!
Flash, like a ... [read poem]
the pains of sleep
Ere on my bed my limbs I lay,
It hath not been my use to pray
With moving lips or bended k... [read poem]
fragment 8: thicker than rain-drops on november thorn
Thicker than rain-drops on November thorn.
fragment 9: the netherlands
Water and windmills, greenness, Islets green;--
Willows whose Trunks beside the shadows stood... [read poem]
france: an ode
Ye Clouds! that far above me float and pause,
Whose pathless march no mortal may control!... [read poem]
frost at midnight
The Frost performs its secret ministry,
Unhelped by any wind. The owlet's cry
Came loud--a... [read poem]
towards freedom
'Ere the day dawns, while yet white are the seas, set out you will;
With the lust of holding th... [read poem]
fragment 4: as some vast tropic tree, itself a wood
As some vast Tropic tree, itself a wood,
That crests its Head with clouds, beneath the flood... [read poem]
to asra
Are there two things, of all which men possess,
That are so like each other and so near,
A... [read poem]

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