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Poem by William Cowper


Human Frailty


Weak and irresolute is man;
The purpose of to-day,
Woven with pains into his plan,
To-morrow rends away.

The bow well bent, and smart the spring,
Vice seems already slain;
But passion rudely snaps the string,
And it revives again.

Some foe to his upright intent
Finds out his weaker part;
Virtue engages his assent,
But Pleasure wins his heart.

СTis here the folly of the wise
Through all his art we view;
And, while his tongue the charge denies,
His conscience owns it true.

Bound on a voyage of awful length
And dangers little known,
A stranger to superior strength,
Man vainly trusts his own.

But oars alone can neТer prevail
To reach the distant coast;
The breath of Heaven must swell the sail,
Or all the toil is lost. 



William Cowper


William Cowper's other poems:
  1. To The Rev. Mr. Newton
  2. The Dog and the Water Lily
  3. The New Convert
  4. Afflictions Sanctified by the Word
  5. Heroism


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