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William Stanley Braithwaite, ed. The Book of Georgian Verse. 1909.

To Mary Unwin

William Cowper (1731–1800)

MARY! I want a lyre with other strings,

Such aid from Heaven as some have feigned 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 its 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.