In the last three days, I have read four books on animals — Michael Morpurgo’s The Butterfly Lion, War Horse, Katherine Applegate’s The One and Only Ivan, and today I finished TS Eliot’s poetry collection on cats. The lovely, lovely Old Possum’s Books of Practical Cats. I am enjoying myself. Thoroughly! 🙂
I loved quite a few things about Old Possum’s Books of Practical cats. First of all, I loved TS Eliot’s nom de plume — Old Possum. Adorable! Then, I liked the fact that the poems were inspired by the letters that he wrote to his godchildren. I adore people who write to children.
The book is a delightful read for children, and children stuck in adults’ bodies. 😉 I relished every poem, and particularly liked these lines from the last poem called The Ad-Dressing of Cats.
You now have learned enough to see
That Cats are much like you and me
And other 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.
For I firmly believe that each animal is unique, I was pleased to read that poem.
My favourite cats from the collection are The Rum Rum Tugger, who is a curious cat. But, Old Possum called him a terrible bore. Mungojerrie and Rumpelteazer, who are skilled burglars, tight-rope walkers, and acrobats. I loved the lazy Old Deuteronomy. The legend is that he had about 99 wives. Oh, and then Macavity, The Mystery Cat, who is elusive, and even The Scotland Yard cannot catch him. When he is not being mysterious, he is ‘engaged in doing complicated long division sums.’ 😀 I wanted to bring Shimbleshanks, The Railway Cat, to my place. Because he is disciplined, and ensures everything goes like clockwork at the railway station. I want him home, so he can instill some discipline in me. 😉 And, according to Old Possum, a cat must have three names. The first one should be a common name. Quite like Peter and James. The second one should be more peculiar and dignified. Ideally, it should not belong to any other cat. Something like Munkustrap, Quaxo, Coricopat, Bombalurina, and Jellylorum. The third one would be chosen by the cats themselves, and they don’t reveal. 🙂
Some pictures from the book that I found so ‘purrful’ 😀