The Snail

William Cowper

 
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.
Give but his horns the slightest touch,
His self-collecting power is such,
He shrinks into his house, with much
                                                Displeasure.
Where'er he dwells, he dwells alone,
Except himself has chattels none,
Well satisfied to be his own
                                                Whole treasure.
Thus, hermit-like, his life he leads,
Nor partner of his banquet needs,
And if he meets one, only feeds
                                                The faster.
Who seeks him must be worse than blind,
(He and his house are so combin'd)
If, finding it, he fails to find
                                                Its master.
 

Poems by This Author

Olney Hymns, I, [Walking with God] by William Cowper
Oh! for a closer walk with God
Olney Hymns, IX [The Contrite Heart] by William Cowper
The Lord will happiness divine
Olney Hymns, XLVIII [Joy and Peace in Believing] by William Cowper
Sometimes a light surprises
Olney Hymns, XXXII [The Shining Light] by William Cowper
My former hopes are fled
The Task, Book I, The Sofa [excerpt] by William Cowper
Peace to the artist, whose ingenious thought
The Task, Book II, A Time-Piece [excerpt] by William Cowper
Oh for a lodge in some vast wilderness
Epitaph on a Hare by William Cowper
Though duly from my hand he took
Hatred and vengeance, my eternal portion by William Cowper
Hatred and vengeance, my eternal portion,
The Castaway by William Cowper
Obscurest night involved the sky


Further Reading

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