It is hard to believe this poem is pushing the century mark. Thomas Hardy one-time architect turned writer, struggling to sell his poems, probably met this kind of person. His experiences reinforced his idea pertaining to the frustration of humanity's reaching its higher potential; and here he portrayed his semi-clinical verbal painting.

In his early days he was quite surprised
When she told him she was compromised
By meetings and lingerings at his whim,
And thinking not of herself but him;
While she lifted orbs aggrieved and round
(As she had raised them to nine or ten
Of antecedent nice young men):
And in remorse he thought with a sigh,
How good she is, and how bad am I! --
It was years before he understood
That she was the wicked one -- he the good.

---Thomas Hardy

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