The Faded Face

A poem by Thomas Hardy

How was this I did not see
Such a look as here was shown
Ere its womanhood had blown
Past its first felicity? -
That I did not know you young,
Faded Face,
Know you young!

Why did Time so ill bestead
That I heard no voice of yours
Hail from out the curved contours
Of those lips when rosy red;
Weeted not the songs they sung,
Faded Face,
Songs they sung!

By these blanchings, blooms of old,
And the relics of your voice -
Leavings rare of rich and choice
From your early tone and mould -
Let me mourn, - aye, sorrow-wrung,
Faded Face,
Sorrow-wrung!

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