The Life of William Cowper, Volume 2

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Page 160 - And that immortalizes whom it sings: — But thou hast little need. There is a Book By seraphs writ with beams of heavenly light, On which the eyes of God not rarely look, A chronicle of actions just and bright — There all thy deeds, my faithful Mary, shine ; And since thou own'st that praise, I spare thee mine.
Page 285 - 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...
Page 338 - 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 strife, Supported by despair of life.
Page 102 - Goldsmith's Life of Parnell is poor; not that it is poorly written, but that he had poor materials ; for nobody can write the life of a man, but those who have eat and drunk and lived in social intercourse with him.
Page 338 - Nor, cruel as it seemed, 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 repelled; And ever, as the minutes flew, Entreated help, or cried 'Adieu!
Page 338 - Whate'er they gave, should visit more. Nor, cruel as it seemed, 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.
Page 20 - To write on their plan, it was at least necessary to read and think. No man could be born a metaphysical poet, nor assume the dignity of a writer by descriptions copied from descriptions, by imitations borrowed from imitations, by traditional imagery and hereditary similes, by readiness of rhyme and volubility of syllables.
Page 228 - I have ever seen ; but which, dissipated as my powers of thought are at present, I will not undertake to describe. It shall suffice me to say, that they occupy three sides of a hill, which in Buckinghamshire might well pass for a mountain, and from the summit of which is beheld a most magnificent landscape bounded by the sea, and in one part by the Isle of Wight, which may also be seen plainly from the window of the library in which I am writing.
Page 32 - I have lately finished eight volumes of Johnson's Prefaces, or Lives of the Poets. In all that number I observe but one man— a poet of no great fame— of whom I did not know that he existed till I found him there, whose mind seems to have had the slightest tincture of religion; and he was hardly in his senses. His name was Collins. He sunk into a state of melancholy, and died young. Not long before his death, he was found at his lodgings in Islington by his biographer, with the New Testament in...
Page 21 - The expressions of a poem designed purely for instruction ought to be plain and natural, and yet majestic: for here the poet is presumed to be a kind of lawgiver, and those three qualities which I have named are proper to the legislative style.

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