by Thomas Hardy (1840-1928)
I said to Love, "It is not now as in old days When men adored thee and thy ways All else above; Named the the Boy, the Bright, the One Who spread a heaven beneath the sun," I said to Love. I said to him, "We now know more of thee than then; We were but weak in judgment when With hearts abrim We clamoured thee that thou would'st please Inflict on us thine agonies," I said to him. I said to Love, "Thou art not young, thou art not fair, No faery darts, no cherub air, Nor swan, nor dove Are thine; but features pitiless, And iron daggers of distress," I said to Love. "Depart then, Love! . . . - Man's race shall end, dost threaten thou? The age to come the man of now Know nothing of? We fear not such a threat from thee; We are too old in apathy! Mankind shall cease - So let it be," I said to Love?