Between Us Now

Between us now and here –
Two thrown together
Who are not wont to wear
Life’s most flush feather –
Who see the scenes slide past,
The daytimes dimming fast,
Let there be truth at last,
Even if despair.

So thoroughly and long
Have you now known me,
So real in faith and strong
Have I now shown me,
That nothing needs a disguise
Further in any wise,
Or asks or justifies
A guarded tongue.

Face unto face, then, say,
Eyes mine own meeting,
Is your heart far away,
Or with mine beating?
When false things are brought low,
And swift things have grown slow,
Feigning like froth shall go,
Faith be for aye.

-Thomas Hardy

Analysis:

Thomas Hardy was an English Novelist and poet from the United Kingdom. His novels and poems were based on love. Thomas Hardy and his wife, Emma had a rocky relationship. They were estranged for 20 years, and he was filled with remorse after her death in 1912. It is argued that Hardy truly became a famous poet following the death of his wife. This poem has a more conversational tone between a couple, as though Hardy is addressing to his wife.

Thomas Hardy explains how truthfulness and trust are important in a relationship. Relationships are hard work, and to live up to it, honesty plays a major role. Even in the most troubling times, gloomiest days, we need to choose to speak the truth.

The two people in the poem have known each other for long, they shared equal faith and strength for each other and this proved to the speaker that nothing needs to be hidden from his partner. The speaker doesn’t have to lie to his partner, neither is there a need to question each other.

The speaker then wants to confront his partner. He questions if she has stopped loving him. The lines “Is your heart far away, Or with mine beating?” also could be a reference to his wife’s death, where he wants to know if she is far away or just next to him. He warns that he wouldn’t want to hear any false answers to his question, any excuse made by her would be trivial. But, he still has faith in her.

 

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