The life and letters of William Cowper

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Page 185 - Nor, cruel as it seem'd, could he Their haste himself condemn, Aware that flight, in such a sea, Alone could rescue them; Yet bitter felt it still to die Deserted, and his friends so nigh. He long survives, who lives an hour In ocean, self-upheld; And so long he, with unspent power, His destiny repell'd; And ever as the minutes flew, Entreated help, or cried - 'Adieu!
Page 453 - Thought cannot spend itself, comparing still The great and little of thy lot, thy growth From almost nullity into a state Of matchless grandeur, and declension thence, Slow, into such magnificent decay. Time was, when, settling on thy leaf, a fly Could shake thee to the root — and time has been When tempests could not.
Page 439 - In regions mild of calm and serene air, Above the smoke and stir of this dim spot Which men call Earth, and, with low-thoughted care.
Page 184 - Atlantic billows roared, When such a destined wretch as I, Washed headlong from on board, Of friends, of hope, of all bereft, His floating home for ever left. No braver chief could Albion boast Than he with whom he went, Nor ever ship left Albion's coast With warmer wishes sent. He loved them both, but both in vain, Nor him beheld, nor her again. Not long beneath the whelming brine, Expert to swim, he lay; Nor soon he felt his strength decline, Or courage die away; But waged with death a lasting...
Page 191 - YE, who with warmth the public triumph feel Of talents dignified by sacred zeal, Here, to devotion's bard devoutly just, Pay your fond tribute due to Cowper's dust ! England, exulting in his spotless fame, Ranks with her dearest sons his favourite name.
Page 242 - With those whose mansions glitter in his sight, Calls the delightful scenery all his own. His are the mountains, and the valleys his, And the resplendent rivers ; his to enjoy With a propriety that none can feel. But who with filial confidence inspired Can lift to heaven an unpresumptuous eye, And smiling say — My Father made them all.
Page 160 - Twas my distress that brought thee low, My Mary! Thy needles, once a shining store, For my sake restless heretofore, Now rust disused, and shine no more ; My Mary ! For though thou gladly wouldst fulfil The same...
Page 186 - That tells his name, his worth, his age, Is wet with Anson's tear. And tears by bards or heroes shed Alike immortalize the dead. I therefore purpose not, or dream...
Page 257 - A critic of the present day serves a poem as a cook serves a dead turkey, when she fastens the legs of it to a post, and draws out all the sinews. For this we may thank Pope ; but unless we could imitate him in the closeness and compactness of his expression, as well as in the smoothness of his numbers, we had better drop the imitation, which serves no other purpose than to emasculate and weaken all we write. Give me a manly, rough line, with a deal of meaning in it, rather than a whole poem full...
Page 386 - THE SNAIL. To grass, or leaf, or fruit, or wall, The Snail sticks close, nor fears to fall, As if he grew there, house and all Together. Within that house secure he hides, When danger imminent betides Of storm, or other harm besides Of weather.

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