Wessex Poems and Other Verses

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Author: Thomas Hardy

IN A WOOD
See "THE WOODLANDERS"

Pale beech and pine-tree blue,
Set in one clay,
Bough to bough cannot you
Bide out your day?
When the rains skim and skip,
Why mar sweet comradeship,
Blighting with poison-drip
Neighbourly spray?

Heart-halt and spirit-lame,
City-opprest,
Unto this wood I came
As to a nest;
Dreaming that sylvan peace
Offered the harrowed ease—
Nature a soft release
From men’s unrest.

But, having entered in,
Great growths and small
Show them to men akin -
Combatants all!
Sycamore shoulders oak,
Bines the slim sapling yoke,
Ivy-spun halters choke
Elms stout and tall.

Touches from ash, O wych,
Sting you like scorn!
You, too, brave hollies, twitch
Sidelong from thorn.
Even the rank poplars bear
Illy a rival’s air,
Cankering in black despair
If overborne.

Since, then, no grace I find
Taught me of trees,
Turn I back to my kind,
Worthy as these.
There at least smiles abound,
There discourse trills around,
There, now and then, are found
Life-loyalties.

1887: 1896.

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Chicago: Thomas Hardy, "In a Wood See the Woodlanders," Wessex Poems and Other Verses, ed. Keil, Heinrich, 1822-1894 and trans. Seaton, R. C. in Wessex Poems and Other Verses (New York: George E. Wood, ""Death-bed"" edition, 1892), Original Sources, accessed August 9, 2022, http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=4TJYP3LAIC7DXCG.

MLA: Hardy, Thomas. "In a Wood See "the Woodlanders"." Wessex Poems and Other Verses, edited by Keil, Heinrich, 1822-1894, and translated by Seaton, R. C., in Wessex Poems and Other Verses, New York, George E. Wood, ""Death-bed"" edition, 1892, Original Sources. 9 Aug. 2022. http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=4TJYP3LAIC7DXCG.

Harvard: Hardy, T, 'In a Wood See "the Woodlanders"' in Wessex Poems and Other Verses, ed. and trans. . cited in ""Death-bed"" edition, 1892, Wessex Poems and Other Verses, George E. Wood, New York. Original Sources, retrieved 9 August 2022, from http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=4TJYP3LAIC7DXCG.