“Hap,” by Thomas Hardy

“. . .And dicing Time for gladness casts a moan. . .
These purblind Doomsters had as readily strown
Blisses about my pilgrimage as pain.”

To the Editor (New York Times):

It’s clear in context that “had” means “might have.” The poet isn’t saying that chance and time did offer blisses along with pain. He’s saying that they could just as well have offered blisses, but for no reason at all, they didn’t. And he laments not his misfortune — which he could accept, if it were inflicted deliberately, though unjustly — but its randomness and pointlessness.
Ithaca, N.Y.

supper in Ares


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *