About Me

My photo
Washington, United States
loves: you win if you guessed "pets" and "museums". Also books, art history, travel, British punk, Korean kimchi, bindis, martinis, and other things TBD. I will always make it very clear if a post is sponsored in any way. Drop me a line at thepetmuseum AT gmail.com !

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

"my carroty cat" - in praise of orange

A poem from an 1875 anthology, in which the poet's eyes are opened to the sheer glory of an orange kitten.  I can't believe it would take anyone six stanzas to do so - but enjoy.


Carroty kittens are quite a mistake!
Might I not dye it for charity's sake?
Tabby and tortoiseshell, ebon and white,
All are so pretty, while this is a fright!
How shall I play with it, praise it or pat?
What can I do with a carroty cat?

Golden and auburn, and chestnut and fair,
Brown, black, and white, are the colours for hair;
All have admirers, but nothing is said,
Since hair was hair, for a carroty head!
Kittens are judged by the same rule as that—
I'd be ashamed of a carroty cat!

Why, it's chasing its tail, I declare!
Leaping with delicate joy in the air!
Purring and frisking with light-hearted mew
Just like a cat of respectable hue!
Making a bright little heap on the mat—
Must it grow into a carroty cat?

If it is innocent, happy, and kind,
Ought we its carroty colour to mind?
I should be quite in a mess, I suppose,
If people sneered at a freckly nose!
Let me remember the rule, tit for tat,
Ere I condemn a poor carroty cat!

Look at its snug little kitteny face!
Every movement a movement of grace;
See it embracing my hands and my feet,
Playfully tender, engagingly sweet;
Round little feather-ball, fluffy and fat—
Am I admiring a carroty cat?

Yes, let me honestly own how it is—
Never a kitten was nicer than this!
Safe from the least interference from me,
True to its colours the darling shall be—
White as a snowdrift or black as a hat,
None can compare with my carroty cat! 

From Hymns and Poems for Little Folks (anon., Cassell Petter & Galpin, 1875) p. 262-3.

No comments: