The Nightingale And Glow-Worm

Poem By William Cowper

The tree is happy because it is scarcely sentient;
the hard rock is happier still, it feels nothing:
there is no pain as great as being alive,
no burden heavier than that of conscious life.

To be, and to know nothing, and to lack a way,
and the dread of having been, and future terrors...
And the sure terror of being dead tomorrow,
and to suffer all through life and through the darkness,

and through what we do not know and hardly suspect...
And the flesh that temps us with bunches of cool grapes,
and the tomb that awaits us with its funeral sprays,
and not to know where we go,
nor whence we came! ...

Comments about The Nightingale And Glow-Worm

Well expressed thoughts and feelings.An insightful work of art. Thanks for sharing, Ruben.
The poet is turning to fatalism, an age old theme, quotably expressed in Thomas Gray's 'Elegy in a country churchyard'. I wish we amateurs try to write something different, personal, even describing a minor incident in our daily life, mostly suburban perhaps. My rating for this poem is 6. A. Madhavan
His real name was Félix Rubén García Sarmiento, and this poem seems to indicate that he had no belief in the hereafter. He says 'there is no pain as great as being alive' and I totally disagree. Life is great! He did a great job expressing himself in the poem, however.
............an incredible poem....the ending is extraordinary ★
We came here: the light pierces the darkness in the world. And, in the hope of creating an enlightened world, will go dark.


4,8 out of 5
12 total ratings

Other poems of COWPER

Blazon

The snow-white Olympic swan,
with beak of rose-red agate,
preens his eucharistic wing,
which he opens to the sun like a fan.

Fatality

The tree is happy because it is scarcely sentient;
the hard rock is happier still, it feels nothing:
there is no pain as great as being alive,

Sinfonia En Gris Mayor (Symphony In Gray Major)

El mar como un vasto cristal azogado
refleja la lámina de un cielo de zinc;
lejanas bandadas de pájaros manchan

Portico

I am the singer who of late put by
The verse azulean and the chant profane,
Across whose nights a rossignol would cry

Canto De Esperanza (With English Translation)

Un gran vuelo de cuervos mancha el azul celeste.
Un soplo milenario trae amagos de peste.
Se asesinan los hombres en el extremo Este.

Cantos De Vida Y Esperanza

I
Yo soy aquel que ayer no más decía
el verso azul y la canción profana,
en cuya noche un ruiseñor había