Thomas Hardy


I busied myself to find a sure
         Snug hermitage
That should preserve my Love secure
         From the world's rage;
Where no unseemly saturnals,
         Or strident traffic-roars,
Or hum of intervolved cabals
         Should echo at her doors.

I laboured that the diurnal spin
         Of vanities
Should not contrive to suck her in
         By dark degrees,
And cunningly operate to blur
         Sweet teachings I had begun;
And then I went full-heart to her
         To expound the glad deeds done.

She looked at me, and said thereto
         With a pitying smile,
"And this is what has busied you
          So long a while?
O poor exhausted one, I see
          You have worn you old and thin
For naught! Those moils you fear for me
          I find most pleasure in!”