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By Thomas Hardy

“I am playing my oldest tunes,” declared she,

      “All the old tunes I know,—

Those I learnt ever so long ago.”

—Why she should think just then she’d play them

       Silence cloaks like snow.


When I returned from the town at nightfall

      Notes continued to pour

As when I had left two hours before:

“It’s the very last time,” she said in closing;

       “From now I play no more.”


A few morns onward found her fading,

      And, as her life outflew,

I thought of her playing her tunes right through;

And I felt she had known of what was coming,

      And wondered how she knew.

 


Poet Bio

Thomas Hardy
Thomas Hardy was born in Dorset County, England, where he studied architecture, but he later quit to pursue a literary career. In order to gain financial stability, Hardy first published novels, including such classics as Tess of the D’Urbervilles and Jude the Obscure. Once he was well known and well off financially, he returned to poetry, his first love. Hardy’s dark, bleak verse was at odds with his Victorian contemporaries who tended to present more optimistic perspectives on life.

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