Here is a spooky old poem by the great Thomas Hardy sent to me from an elf at the bottom of the world. The poem tells of our memories that ‘time touches not’, even as we ‘wither daily’! Thank you, Deborah. Much love, Susie x


The Phantom Horsewoman




Queer are the ways of a man I know:

He comes and stands

In a careworn craze,

And looks at the sands

And the seaward haze

With moveless hands

And face and gaze,

Then turns to go...

And what does he see when he gazes so?




They say he sees as an instant thing

More clear than to-day,

A sweet soft scene

That once was in play

By that briny green;

Yes, notes alway

Warm, real, and keen,

What his back years bring—

A phantom of his own figuring.




Of this vision of his they might say more:

Not only there

Does he see this sight,

But everywhere

In his brain–day, night,

As if on the air

It were drawn rose bright–

Yea, far from that shore

Does he carry this vision of heretofore:




A ghost-girl-rider. And though, toil-tried,

He withers daily,

Time touches her not,

But she still rides gaily

In his rapt thought

On that shagged and shaly

Atlantic spot,

And as when first eyed

Draws rein and sings to the swing of the tide.


By Thomas Hardy