Enjoy A Collection Of Cat Poetry That Celebrates The Literary Fineness of Felines

Felines have long served as literary inspiration to writers and authors, sparking the lyrically minded to pen works both long and short in honor of the magic that is the cat. And how could they not be inspired by kitties? The sweep of their whiskers, the fineness of their fur, and the depths of their love…all this and more comes together to create a living piece of art that will continue to enchant feline fanciers until the end of time.

From centuries gone by to more recent days, enjoy this collection of cat poetry that captures the ranges of the feline essence. In these lines, you’ll find the purrfect array of words to that will have you falling in love with your cat all over again! Happy reading…

Ode to Feline: A Collection of Poems for the Cat Lover

#1 – “Cats”

Written by Eleanor Farjeon, an English author of fantastical stories for children born in 1881, in “Cats,” she writes of the feline ability to sleep anywhere!

“Cats sleep, anywhere,

Any table, any chair

Top of piano, window-ledge,

In the middle, on the edge,

Open drawer, empty shoe,

Anybody’s lap will do,

Fitted in a cardboard box,

In the cupboard, with your frocks-

Anywhere! They don’t care!

Cats sleep anywhere.”

#2 – “A Cat Is Not A Cat”

Translated into English, the poem “A Cat Is Not A Cat” by S. Ganapathi comes from Indian Literature and recognizes the beauty of the feline.

A cat is a fallen piece of cloud

Rolled up in wakeful sleep.


A mixed metaphor

Descending the stairs

With a questioning tail.


A nimble poem on four feet

Arching in lascivious laziness.


A cat is a bonsai-tiger,

Illuding the window-bars.


A pair of burnt sienna petals

Startling the night.


A cat is a lewd tongue, virile whiskers,

Cunning paws and friendly deceit.


A defiant-meek ball of cotton-wool

Programmed to flow and freeze.

#3 – ‘She sights a Bird – she chuckles’

Emily Dickinson gave lyrical beauty to any subject she touched in her poetry and felines were no exception.

She sights a Bird—she chuckles—

She flattens—then she crawls—

She runs without the look of feet—

Her eyes increase to Balls—


Her Jaws stir—twitching—hungry—

Her Teeth can hardly stand—

She leaps, but Robin leaped the first—

Ah, Pussy, of the Sand,


The Hopes so juicy ripening—

You almost bathed your Tongue—

When Bliss disclosed a hundred Toes—

And fled with every one—

#4 – “The Naming of Cats”

From the 1939 classic Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats by T.S. Eliot, comes “The Naming of Cats.”

The Naming of Cats is a difficult matter,

It isn’t just one of your holiday games;

You may think at first I’m as mad as a hatter

When I tell you, a cat must have THREE DIFFERENT NAMES.

First of all, there’s the name that the family use daily,

Such as Peter, Augustus, Alonzo or James,

Such as Victor or Jonathan, George or Bill Bailey —

All of them sensible everyday names.

There are fancier names if you think they sound sweeter,

Some for the gentlemen, some for the dames:

Such as Plato, Admetus, Electra, Demeter —

But all of them sensible everyday names.

But I tell you, a cat needs a name that’s particular,

A name that’s peculiar, and more dignified,

Else how can he keep up his tail perpendicular,

Or spread out his whiskers, or cherish his pride?

Of names of this kind, I can give you a quorum,

Such as Munkustrap, Quaxo, or Coricopat,

Such as Bombalurina, or else Jellylorum —

Names that never belong to more than one cat.

But above and beyond there’s still one name left over,

And that is the name that you never will guess;

The name that no human research can discover —

But THE CAT HIMSELF KNOWS, and will never confess.

When you notice a cat in profound meditation,

The reason, I tell you, is always the same:

His mind is engaged in a rapt contemplation

Of the thought, of the thought, of the thought of his name:

His ineffable effable


Deep and inscrutable singular Name.

#5 – “The Owl and the Pussy-Cat”

A collection of cat poems wouldn’t be complete without this childhood classic by Edward Lear.


The Owl and the Pussy-cat went to sea

   In a beautiful pea-green boat,

They took some honey, and plenty of money,

   Wrapped up in a five-pound note.

The Owl looked up to the stars above,

   And sang to a small guitar,

“O lovely Pussy! O Pussy, my love,

    What a beautiful Pussy you are,

         You are,

         You are!

What a beautiful Pussy you are!”


Pussy said to the Owl, “You elegant fowl!

   How charmingly sweet you sing!

O let us be married! too long we have tarried:

   But what shall we do for a ring?”

They sailed away, for a year and a day,

   To the land where the Bong-Tree grows

And there in a wood a Piggy-wig stood

   With a ring at the end of his nose,

             His nose,

             His nose,

   With a ring at the end of his nose.


“Dear Pig, are you willing to sell for one shilling

   Your ring?” Said the Piggy, “I will.”

So they took it away, and were married next day

   By the Turkey who lives on the hill.

They dined on mince, and slices of quince,

   Which they ate with a runcible spoon;

And hand in hand, on the edge of the sand,

   They danced by the light of the moon,

             The moon,

             The moon,

They danced by the light of the moon.

#6 – “The Cat and the Moon”

Irish poet W.B. Yeats is one of the 20th century masters of the poetic form and his talent doesn’t disappoint in this observance of a feline in the night.

The cat went here and there

And the moon spun round like a top,

And the nearest kin of the moon,

The creeping cat, looked up.

Black Minnaloushe stared at the moon,

For, wander and wail as he would,

The pure cold light in the sky

Troubled his animal blood.

Minnaloushe runs in the grass

Lifting his delicate feet.

Do you dance, Minnaloushe, do you dance?

When two close kindred meet,

What better than call a dance?

Maybe the moon may learn,

Tired of that courtly fashion,

A new dance turn.

Minnaloushe creeps through the grass

From moonlit place to place,

The sacred moon overhead

Has taken a new phase.

Does Minnaloushe know that his pupils

Will pass from change to change,

And that from round to crescent,

From crescent to round they range?

Minnaloushe creeps through the grass

Alone, important and wise,

And lifts to the changing moon

His changing eyes.

#7 – “The Tyger”

William Blake exalts the majesty of the tiger as it was wrought by a higher power in this classic poem. “The Tyger” is a piece that still captivates audiences today and while he writes of a big cat, cat lovers can see the echo of Blake’s words in their own kitties.

Tyger Tyger, burning bright,

In the forests of the night;

What immortal hand or eye,

Could frame thy fearful symmetry?


In what distant deeps or skies.

Burnt the fire of thine eyes?

On what wings dare he aspire?

What the hand, dare seize the fire?


And what shoulder, & what art,

Could twist the sinews of thy heart?

And when thy heart began to beat,

What dread hand? & what dread feet?


What the hammer? what the chain,

In what furnace was thy brain?

What the anvil? what dread grasp,

Dare its deadly terrors clasp!


When the stars threw down their spears

And water’d heaven with their tears:

Did he smile his work to see?

Did he who made the Lamb make thee?


Tyger Tyger burning bright,

In the forests of the night:

What immortal hand or eye,

Dare frame thy fearful symmetry?

Just a Few More Cat Poems to Spark Your Imagination

Here are more odes to the feline kind if you can’t get enough cat poetry.

Now, that you’re done with rhyme time, Let’s Look At Cute Cat Pics Just Because We Can!

H/T: www.daily.jstor.org

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