Welcome to Poetry.com

Poetry.com is a huge collection of poems from famous and amateur poets from around the world — collaboratively published by a community of authors and contributing editors.

Navigate through our poetry database by subjects, alphabetically or simply search by keywords. You can submit a new poem, discuss and rate existing work, listen to poems using voice pronunciation and even translate pieces to many common and not-so-common languages.

Horace, Book II. Ode XVI.

William Cowper 1731 (Berkhamsted) – 1800 (Dereham)

Ease is the weary merchant's prayer,
Who ploughs by night the Ægean flood,
When neither moon nor stars appear,
Or faintly glimmer through the cloud.

For ease the Mede with quiver graced,
For ease the Thracian hero sighs,
Delightful ease all pant to taste,
A blessing which no treasure buys.

For neither gold can lull to rest,
Nor all a Consul's guard beat off
The tumults of a troubled breast,
The cares that haunt a gilded roof.

Happy the man whose table shows
A few clean ounces of old plate,
Nor fear intrudes on his repose,
Nor sordid wishes to be great.

Poor short-lived things, what plans we lay
Ah, why forsake our native home?
To distant climates speed away;
For self sticks close where'er we roam.

Care follows hard, and soon o'ertakes
The well-rigg'd ship, the warlike steed;
Her destined quarry ne'er forsakes --
Not the wind flies with half her speed.

From anxious fears of future ill
Guard well the cheerful, happy now;
Gild e'en your sorrows with a smile,
No blessing is unmix'd below.

Thy neighing steeds and lowing herds,
Thy numerous flocks around thee graze,
And the best purple Tyre affords
Thy robe magnificent displays.

One me indulgent Heaven bestow'd
A rural mansion, neat and small;
This lyre; -- and as for yonder crowd,
The happiness to hate them all.

Rate this poem:(0.00 / 0 votes)
Font size:
Collection  Edit     

Submitted on May 13, 2011

1:10 min read

William Cowper

William Macquarie Cowper was an Australian Anglican archdeacon and Dean of Sydney. more…

All William Cowper poems | William Cowper Books

FAVORITE (1 fan)

Discuss this William Cowper poem with the community:



    Find a translation for this poem in other languages:

    Select another language:

    • - Select -
    • 简体中文 (Chinese - Simplified)
    • 繁體中文 (Chinese - Traditional)
    • Español (Spanish)
    • Esperanto (Esperanto)
    • 日本語 (Japanese)
    • Português (Portuguese)
    • Deutsch (German)
    • العربية (Arabic)
    • Français (French)
    • Русский (Russian)
    • ಕನ್ನಡ (Kannada)
    • 한국어 (Korean)
    • עברית (Hebrew)
    • Gaeilge (Irish)
    • Українська (Ukrainian)
    • اردو (Urdu)
    • Magyar (Hungarian)
    • मानक हिन्दी (Hindi)
    • Indonesia (Indonesian)
    • Italiano (Italian)
    • தமிழ் (Tamil)
    • Türkçe (Turkish)
    • తెలుగు (Telugu)
    • ภาษาไทย (Thai)
    • Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)
    • Čeština (Czech)
    • Polski (Polish)
    • Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian)
    • Românește (Romanian)
    • Nederlands (Dutch)
    • Ελληνικά (Greek)
    • Latinum (Latin)
    • Svenska (Swedish)
    • Dansk (Danish)
    • Suomi (Finnish)
    • فارسی (Persian)
    • ייִדיש (Yiddish)
    • հայերեն (Armenian)
    • Norsk (Norwegian)
    • English (English)


    Use the citation below to add this poem to your bibliography:


    "Horace, Book II. Ode XVI." Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 11 Apr. 2021. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/39877/horace,-book-ii.-ode-xvi.>.

    We need you!

    Help us build the largest poetry community and poems collection on the web!

    Browse Poetry.com


    Are you a poetry master?

    Which of these poets did not use capital letters in his works?
    • A. Sylvia Plath
    • B. Robert Frost
    • C. Robert Browning
    • D. E.E. Cummings

    Our favorite collection of

    Famous Poets


    Thanks for your vote! We truly appreciate your support.