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You did not walk with me
Of late to the hill-top tree
By the gated ways, as in earlier days..
You were weak and lame, so you never came…
And I went alone, and I did not mind,
Not thinking of you as left behind.
I walked up there today just in the former way;
Surveyed around the familiar ground by myself again..
What difference, then?
Only that underlying sense of the look of a room on returning thence
. Thomas Hardy….

The Walk" is short and poignant….
Between the stanzas we sense the frequent time-shift from past to present. The poet recalls that often in the evening he and Emma (his wife) had walked a spiral path from the end ofthe garden to a“hilltop tree.”
Later, for physical reasons, his companion did not accompany him; but he “did not mind,” having still the sense of her presence.
In the second stanza, now a present moment, he walks again the familiar path.
Nothing has changed. “What difference, then?” he asks.
“Only that underlying sense of the look of a room on returning thence”.
It does not take Freud to define the peculiar impact of this brief poem.
But this poem is not for everyone. It is only for one who has known that painful moment of entering a place haunted by the sense of a beloved personality, now lost.
There is a moment of starkness. One does not want to enter. It is as simple as that
…Excerpt Dauner

I did not want to do a literal interpretation of the verse, so I painted “The Walk” as an evening scene in autumn, with mist in the distance and the light of the setting sun still illuminating the trees which are silhouetted against the sky…
I imagined Hardy walking here with his wife till she could no longer do so
Watercolour On Arches HP Paper

The Return of the Native

Wessex Tales

Egdon Sunrise

I paint in many different styles and feature a myriad of subject matter, which I show as individual collections….
I am inspired by the world interpreting it in brilliant colours, often influenced by the writings of famous authors and poets..
© All rights reserved. All images contained on these pages are © copyright protected by Janis Zroback and any use of these images in any form without her written permission will be considered an infringement of these copyrights.

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  • ©Janis Zroback
    ©Janis Zrobackalmost 5 years ago

  • Sean Jansen
    Sean Jansenalmost 5 years ago

    Gorgeous work Janis…..such beautiful colors in this wonderful artwork.

  • Thank you so much Sean…lovely of you to say so…

    – ©Janis Zroback

  • © Linda Callaghan
    © Linda Callaghanalmost 5 years ago

    lovely painting Janis…it does invite the viewer in to take a walk…very touching piece of writing which matches the painting perfectly…

  • Thank you so much Linda…lovely of you to say so…

    – ©Janis Zroback

  • duncandragon
    duncandragonalmost 5 years ago

    Great work!

  • Thank you so much Duncan…

    – ©Janis Zroback

  • Angela  Burman
    Angela Burmanalmost 5 years ago

    Such a wonderful interpretation of this poignant poem.

  • Thank you so much Angela…very nice of you..

    – ©Janis Zroback

  • Sybille Sterk
    Sybille Sterkalmost 5 years ago


  • Thank you so much…

    – ©Janis Zroback

  • salena
    salenaalmost 5 years ago

    I’m so moved by this beauty! It trickers my childhoodmemory of a path I used to walk down by the water!

  • Thank you so much Salena…I’m thrilled that this resonates with you…

    – ©Janis Zroback

  • Carol Berliner
    Carol Berlineralmost 5 years ago

    Perfect instant fav!

  • Thank you so much Carol…that’s wonderful to know…

    – ©Janis Zroback

  • ©Janis Zroback
    ©Janis Zrobackalmost 5 years ago

  • Racheli
    Rachelialmost 5 years ago

    Beautiful art work, just let’s walk………:-)

  • Thank you so much Rachel…glad you like it…

    – ©Janis Zroback

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