Just last night I spoke with a young friend. I’d sent her a greeting card depicting a cat, sleek and gilded and sparkling with jewels. You see, my young friend tends toward attire that also catches the light. She’d had the card framed and was trying to decide where to hang it on her wall. She already had framed a picture of an owl (I can’t remember if I’d sent her that). She asked, do you think the owl and the cat can be placed side by side? do you think they’d get along? I replied in surprise, my dear! have you never heard of the owl and the pussycat? She hadn’t. She asked, what’s the gist? I told her that I’d share the poem in full in a while but for now it was quite alright, indeed quite wonderful, for the owl and the pussycat to be close on her wall.
The Owl and the Pussycat was first published in 1871 by Edward Lear. A poem once often told and memorized in schools. A nonsense poem that sparked the imagination. Prequels have been written, and sequels, and many a reinterpretation. I’m not sure that the original is shared as often as it used to be. As National Poetry Month wraps up, read the poem for yourself on the Poetry Foundation website. And here is unique interpretation of the story available as a print at LangosyArts.