Tuesday, December 19, 2017

ABC Wednesday
December 20th, 2017

The letter is
for The OXEN by Thomas Hardy.

The Oxen

by Thomas Hardy

Christmas Eve, and twelve of the clock.
"Now they are all on their knees,"
an Elder said as we sat in a flock
By the embers in the hearthside ease.

We pictured the meek mild creatures where
They dwelt in their strawy pen,
Nor did it occur to one of us there
To doubt they were kneeling then.

So fair a fancy few would weave
In these years!  Yet, I feel,
If someone said on Christmas Eve,
"Come, see the oxen kneel,

"In the lonely barton by yonder coomb
Our childhood used to know,"
I should go with him in the gloom,
Hoping it might be so.

This poem has been with me for a long, long time
and when I was first married,
a city girl, learning to love the farm,
I was tempted on those Christmas Eves,
at midnight,
to slip into the barn
where the cow and the ewes
 and an occasional early lamb dwelt,

"Hoping it might be so"

More Xs here at ABC Wednesday