Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Mini Review--The Poetry of Cats

The Poetry of Cats (edited by Samuel Carr) is a slim volume choc full of poems about cats, many written by some very famous writers.  I enjoyed it immensely (big surprise)! Anything about cats is always a good read for me.  I love the writing and poetry of Christina Rossetti so the following poem was my favorite from the book:

On the death of a cat
     A friend of mine aged ten years and a half

Who shall tell the lady's grief
When her Cat was past relief?
Who shall number the hot tears
Shed o'er her, belov'd for years?
Who shall say the dark dismay
Which her dying caused that day?

Come, ye Muses, one and all,
Come obedient to my call;
Come and mourn with tuneful breath
Each one for a separate death;
And, while you in numbers sigh,
I will sing her elegy.

Of a noble race she came,
And Grimalkin was her name.
Young and old full many a mouse
Felt the prowess of her house;
Weak and strong full many a rat
Cowered beneath her crushing pat;
And the birds around the place
Shrank from her too close embrace.
But one night, reft of her strength,
She laid down and died at length:
Lay a kitten by her side
In whose life the mother died.
Spare her line and lineage,
Guard her kitten's tender age.
And that kitten's name as wide
Shall be known as hers that died.
And whoever passes by
The poor grave where Puss doth lie,
Softly, softly let him tread,
Nor disturb her narrow bed.

Christina Rossetti

Anyone who has lost a beloved cat...or any pet...will feel the poignancy of this poem.

Book description (from back of book):

A unique celebration of the cat, with over 50 poems reflecting every feline mood.

Verses by famous poets including T.S. Eliot, Ted Hughes, W.B. Yeats, William Wordsworth and Edward Lear.

Beautifully illustrated with drawings and paintings by Renoir, Manet, Picasso and many others.

Read for the following challenges:

Cat Book Challenge  3 / 12 books
Pages Read Challenge  1900 / 30,000 pages
100+ Reading Challenge  9 / 100+ books
Clover, Bee & Reverie: A Poetry Challenge  1 / 2 books
Buck a Book Challenge

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