(3 January 1892 – 2 September 1973 / Orange Free State)


The fat cat on the mat
may seem to dream
of nice mice that suffice
for him, or cream;
but he free, maybe,
walks in thought
unbowed, proud, where loud
roared and fought
his kin, lean and slim,
or deep in den
in the East feasted on beasts
and tender men.
The giant lion with iron
claw in paw,
and huge ruthless tooth
in gory jaw;
the pard dark-starred,
fleet upon feet,
that oft soft from aloft
leaps upon his meat
where woods loom in gloom --
far now they be,
fierce and free,
and tamed is he;
but fat cat on the mat
kept as a pet
he does not forget.

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Comments (4)

Cats are always full of majesty
loved this poem.almost makes me feel sorry for the cat, being treated as a pet, yet remembering it´s noble heritage
A wonderful poem to read aloud. My child understood it immediately. The cat seemed to be paying close attention too....
Do cats dream of lions, And shirts dream of irons? Do cats dream of leopards, And sheep dream of shepherds?