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Middle-Age Enthusiasms

 To M.
WE passed where flag and flower Signalled a jocund throng; We said: "Go to, the hour Is apt!"--and joined the song; And, kindling, laughed at life and care, Although we knew no laugh lay there.
We walked where shy birds stood Watching us, wonder-dumb; Their friendship met our mood; We cried: "We'll often come: We'll come morn, noon, eve, everywhen!" --We doubted we should come again.
We joyed to see strange sheens Leap from quaint leaves in shade; A secret light of greens They'd for their pleasure made.
We said: "We'll set such sorts as these!" --We knew with night the wish would cease.
"So sweet the place," we said, "Its tacit tales so dear, Our thoughts, when breath has sped, Will meet and mingle here!".
"Words!" mused we.
"Passed the mortal door, Our thoughts will reach this nook no more.

by Thomas Hardy
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