Verse > Anthologies > Ralph Waldo Emerson, ed. > Parnassus: An Anthology of Poetry
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Ralph Waldo Emerson, comp. (1803–1882).  Parnassus: An Anthology of Poetry.  1880.
 
Dependence
By William Cowper (1731–1800)
 
TO keep the lamp alive,
  With oil we fill the bowl:
’Tis water makes the willow thrive,
  And grace that feeds the soul.
 
The Lord’s unsparing hand        5
  Supplies the living stream:
It is not at our own command,
  But still derived from him.
 
Man’s wisdom is to seek
  His strength in God alone;        10
And even an angel would be weak,
  Who trusted in his own.
 
Retreat beneath his wings,
  And in his grace confide:
This more exalts the King of kings        15
  Than all your works beside.
 
In Jesus is our store;
  Grace issues from his throne:
Whoever says, “I want no more,”
  Confesses he has none.        20
 
 
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