Thomas Hardy

(2 June 1840 – 11 January 1928 / Dorchester / England)

A Christmas Ghost Story.


South of the Line, inland from far Durban,
A mouldering soldier lies--your countryman.
Awry and doubled up are his gray bones,
And on the breeze his puzzled phantom moans
Nightly to clear Canopus: "I would know
By whom and when the All-Earth-gladdening Law
Of Peace, brought in by that Man Crucified,
Was ruled to be inept, and set aside?

And what of logic or of truth appears
In tacking 'Anno Domini' to the years?
Near twenty-hundred livened thus have hied,
But tarries yet the Cause for which He died."

Submitted: Thursday, January 01, 2004

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  • Lucy Andrews (2/27/2007 3:55:00 AM)

    is this a poem about Hardy's agnostic views towards God and religion in general, or does it show him mellowing a little? Please help, am floundering (Report) Reply

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