470. To Mary Unwin

William Cowper. 1731-1800

MARY! I want a lyre with other strings,
Such aid from Heaven as some have feign'd they drew,
An eloquence scarce given to mortals, new
And undebased by praise of meaner things;
That ere through age or woe I shed my wings,
I may record thy worth with honour due,
In verse as musical as thou art true,
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.

The Oxford Book of English Verse, HTML edition