Friday, August 3, 2012

Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats

Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats was written by T.S. Eliot. It was also the basis for the musical CATS, the second longest running Broadway show.
The book is actually a collection of seventeen poems about, obviously enough, cats. I enjoyed the subject matter; I am definitely a cat person. I also liked the rhythm and the nonsensical qualities of the poetry. Some of the poems are quite accurate; cats can indeed be little beasties at times. My personal favorite poem is 'The Naming of Cats'. Other favorites are 'The Addressing of Cats' and 'Macavity: The Mystery Cat'.

"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."
-T.S. Eliot, 'The Naming of Cats'

"You now have learned enough to see
That Cats are much like you and me
And other people whom we find
Possessed of various types of mind.
For some are sane and some are mad
And some are good and some are bad
And some are better, some are worse-
But all may be described in verse."
-T.S. Eliot, 'The Addressing of Cats'

Note: The link to the poems only give selected portions of the poems.

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