Thomas Hardy

Genitrix Laesa

    (Measure of a Sarum Sequence)

Nature, through these generations
You have nursed us with a patience
Cruelly crossed by malversations,
Marring mother-ministry
To your multitudes, so blended
By your processes, long-tended,
And the painstaking expended
On their chording tunefully.

But this stuff of slowest moulding,
In your fancy ever enfolding
Life that rhythmic chime is holding:
(Yes; so deem it you, Ladye –
This ‘concordia discors’!) – truly,
Rather, as if some imp unruly
Twitched your artist-arm when newly
Shaping forth your scenery!

Aye. Yet seem you not to know it.
Hence your world-work needs must show it
Good in dream, in deed below it:
(Lady, yes: so sight it we!)
Thus, then, go on fondly thinking:
Why should man your purblind blinking
Crave to cure, when all is sinking
To dissolubility?

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