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

The Missed Train

How I was caught
Hieing home, after days of allure,
And driven to an inn—small, obscure—
At the junction, fret-fraught!

How civil my face
To get them to chamber me there—
A roof I had passed scarce aware
That it stood at the place.

And how all the night
I had dreams of the unwitting cause
Of my lodgment. How lonely I was;
How consoled by her sprite!

Thus onetime to me
Dim wastes of dead years bar away
Then from now! But the like haps to-day
To young lovers, may be.

Years, years as gray seas,
Truly, stretch now between! Less and less
Shrink the visions then great in me.—Yes,
Then in me. Now in these.

by Thomas Hardy

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