William Cowper

1731–1800
William Cowper

The life of William Cowper was defined by extended periods of depression and spiritual agony. At age twenty-three, after leaving school, Cowper began to study law, but stopped because of severe depression. He recovered, but soon relapsed, and was hospitalized; while in the asylum he converted to Evangelicalism. Once released, he lived with a reverend and his wife. After the reverend's death, Cowper became engaged to the wife, with whom he lived for twenty-three years, until her death. In "Light Shining Out of Darkness," Cowper explores the relationship between God and the world and how to react to God's unfathomable power.

What People are Saying

"I was surprised that I was able to select poems that are so out of my usual spoken word preference. The Poetry Out Loud website has hundreds of poems that I have never seen before, and the fact that I found 3 and was able to make it so far with them is amazing to me. I guess I learned that stepping outside of the box is okay!"
Annabelle Emuze
2015 IL POL Champion