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Forty years—aye, and several more—ago, When I paced the headlands loosed from dull employ, The waves huzza'd like a multitude below, In the sway of an all-including joy Without cloy.
Blankly I walked there a double decade after, When thwarts had flung their toils in front of me, And I heard the waters wagging in a long ironic laughter At the lot of men, and all the vapoury Things that be.
Wheeling change has set me again standing where Once I heard the waves huzza at Lammas-tide; But they supplicate now—like a congregation there Who murmur the Confession—I outside, Prayer denied.
This poem is in the public domain.
About This Poem
"The Voice of Things" was published in Moments of Vision and Miscellaneous Verses (Macmillan, 1917).
Thomas Hardy was born in Dorset, England, in 1840. His books include Poems of the Past and the Present (Harper & Bros., 1902) and Satires of Circumstance (Macmillan, 1914). Hardy died in 1928.
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