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Poem by John Newton


The World


See, the world for youth prepares,
Harlot-like, her gaudy snares!
Pleasures round her seem to wait,
But 'tis all a painted cheat.

Rash and unsuspecting youth
Thinks to find thee always smooth,
Always kind, till better taught,
By experience dearly bought.

So the calm, but faithless sea
(Lively emblem, world, of thee)
Tempts the shepherd from the shore
Foreign regions to explore.

While no wrinkled wave is seen,
While the sky remains serene,
Fill'd with hopes, and golden schemes
Of a storm he little dreams.

But ere long the tempest raves,
Then he trembles at the waves;
Wishes then he had been wise,
But too lateЧhe sinks and dies.

Hapless thus, are they, vain world,
Soon on rocks of ruin hurl'd,
Who admiring thee, untry'd,
Court thy pleasure. wealth, or pride.

Such a shipwreck had been mine,
Had not Jesus (name divine!)
Sav'd me with a mighty hand,
And restor'd my soul to land.

Now, with gratitude I raise
Ebenezers to his praise;
Now my rash pursuits are o'er,
I can trust thee, world, no more. 



John Newton


John Newton's other poems:
  1. The Disciples at Sea
  2. Zion, or the City of God
  3. The Hiding Place
  4. Hay-time
  5. Praise for the Incarnation


Poems of the other poets with the same name:

  • Christina Rossetti The World ("By day she woos me, soft, exceeding fair")
  • George Herbert The World ("Love built a stately house, where Fortune came")
  • Henry Vaughan The World ("I saw Eternity the other night")
  • Katherine Philips The World ("Wee falsely think it due unto our friends")

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