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On a Poet’s Birthday – Neutral Tones by Thomas Hardy

My New Year’s Resolution for 2021 is to read more poetry. So, this new series of quizzes, will take a poem by a famous poet on their birthday and ask you to fill in the missing words. The poem for this quiz is the melancholy Neutral Tones by a writer more renowned for his novels, Thomas Hardy, whose birthday is on June 2nd..



  • Question of

    We stood by the — that winter day And the sun was white, as though chidden of God,

    • pond
    • lake
  • Question of

    And a few leaves lay on the starving sod; – They had fallen from an —, and were gray.

    • ash
    • elm
  • Question of

    Your eyes on me were as eyes that rove Over tedious — of years ago;

    • riddles
    • questions
  • Question of

    And some — played between us to and fro On which lost the more by our love.

    • words
    • thoughts
  • Question of

    The smile on your mouth was the — thing Alive enough to have strength to die;

    • deadest
    • saddest
  • Question of

    And a grin of bitterness — thereby Like an ominous bird a-wing

    • swept
    • flew
  • Question of

    Since then, — lessons that love deceives, And wrings with wrong, have shaped to me

    • keen
    • harsh
  • Question of

    Your face, and the God curst sun, and a tree, And a pond edged with — leaves.

    • grayish
    • dying

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