The Snail Poem by William Cowper

The following page is the original poem (text) of The Snail by Willam Cowper. Read the poem and follow the links for more information.

The Snail

By 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,


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 pow’r is such,
He shrinks into his house with much


Where’er he dwells, he dwells alone,
Except himself has chatells 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 combined)
If, finding it, he fails to find

Its master.

The Snail, William Cowper

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