Hap- Commentary

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Hap- Thomas Hardy (Commentary)

‘Hap’ by Thomas Hardy, reflects the poet’s pessimistic and atheistic way of looking at life.

In the first stanza, the speaker says that some vengeful god is happy for the people who are suffering. He wants God to admit to taking joy from the suffering of the people.

The only question that comes to mind is why does the speaker wish for such a sadistic god?

The speaker answers this question by saying that he would die in righteous anger at his unmerited sufferings and pain, if only a sadistic and powerful god would mock at him by happily saying that his undeserved suffering which has been given to him by God is his ecstasy. The existence of such a god would be useful to the speaker so that he could direct all his anger created by the suffering at one being. It would also ease his suffering to know that a ‘powerfuller than I (the speaker) had willed and meted me the tears I (the speaker) shed.’ In other words, the speaker‘s suffering would be reduced if only he knew that some force greater than he had caused the suffering experiences.

In the third stanza, the words ‘But not so’ are not saying that there is no god or superior being. It lets the reader know that what the speaker says in the first two stanzas is not what the speaker believes to be true. After he states that that no malevolent god exists to deal out his problems, he asks ‘why unblooms the best hope ever sown?’. Basically he is asking why hope withers or why does happiness end. The speaker then says ‘Crass casualty obstructs the sun and rain’. The sun and rain are used as symbols to depict happiness and optimism that can be found all over. He says that ‘chance’ or ‘casualty’ will get in the way of natural beautiful things and make them tough to appreciate. Also, he says that happiness can be found in the sun and rain. In the last two lines of the poem, the speaker talks about the fact that random chance has indifferently given him as many blessings as...
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