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Read more poems by Thomas Hardy: Thomas Hardy Poems at Poetry X.

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The Subalterns

Thomas Hardy

          I

"Poor wanderer," said the leaden sky,
     "I fain would lighten thee,
But there are laws in force on high
     Which say it must not be."

          II

--"I would not freeze thee, shorn one," cried
     The North, "knew I but how
To warm my breath, to slack my stride;
     But I am ruled as thou."

          III

--"To-morrow I attack thee, wight,"
     Said Sickness. "Yet I swear
I bear thy little ark no spite,
     But am bid enter there."
 
          IV

--"Come hither, Son," I heard Death say;
     "I did not will a grave
Should end thy pilgrimage to-day,
     But I, too, am a slave!"

          V

We smiled upon each other then,
     And life to me had less
Of that fell look it wore ere when 
     They owned their passiveness.

Added: 25 Feb 2002 | Last Read: 16 Jan 2018 5:58 PM | Viewed: 7885 times

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URL: http://plagiarist.com/poetry/2785/ | Viewed on 16 January 2018.
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