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Thomas Hardy's poem "The Voice" has a very specific, regular, and recognizable rhyme scheme. Rhyme scheme, as I'm sure you know, is simply the pattern of the rhyme in a rhymed poem. The first line is given the indicator A, and the next line either rhymes and is also designated with an A or has a different sound and is designated with a B, and thus it goes. This work by Hardy clearly has an ABAB rhyme scheme in each stanza, with a new set of rhymes for each. Each of the rhymes is exact except for those in lines 2 and 4 in the first stanza--were and fair are approximate or slant rhymes. This distinct and regular pattern of rhyming serves to add a steadiness and consistency to the images and themes of the poem, something for you to examine more closely on your own.
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