Poetry Thursday: Cat Mind

Zoo-tanica, originally uploaded by MontanaRaven.


a cat contemplates
the clematis blossom
which reminds her of
whiskers - the way they warn
her not to try to squeeze
through a space
too small for
the rest of
her lithe

copyright 2006 by Maureen Shaughnessy

This week's Poetry Thursday prompt was to carry around a poem in our pockets and read it over and over or whatever ... then post it here. I took some liberties with the prompt -- instead of carrying around someone else's poem, I wrote out in longhand, one of my own from a long time ago. Having it to read whenever I was at a long stoplight, in the bathtub, over my english muffin and coffee breakfast ... helped me see that all I needed to "do" to the poem to make it better was change the physical shape of the words and lines. I wanted to create a shape like what the cat was thinking as it contemplated the clematis .. and it's own whiskers and round shape.

The other result of carrying this around all week was that I had it on my mind when I was wandering around one of my customer's gardens and I shot a couple of photos (one of their cat, the other of a clematis so I could put together a different kind of visual to go with this visual poem. I titled it "Zootanica."
To read more of the Poetry Thursday participant's take on poem-in-a-pocket, click this button and read the comments:

In case anyone is curious, here are the two photos I used for the image above:

Poetry Thursday: a poem in your pocket


Tammy said...

WOW! That photo was so cool! Thanks for the before and after :)

The poem was charming!

I hope you were able to see the wedding sunrise 3 posts down...very cool

wendylou who? said...

I am not a cat person, but how I loved this poem..the shape was puuurrrfection..(sorry, couldn't resist!!) Yay for you!

January said...

Great poem! I love it when the form fits the words. Well done.

Yes, cool photo. It freaked me out a little bit, but I think that's what I liked most about it.

jillypoet said...

I loved your poem and your pictures, I never, never noticed the similarities with flower and kitty whiskers, and I have 5 cats! You have taught me to look more closely!

Endment said...


paris parfait said...

The poem and the image are both beautiful!Its amazing how combining those two photos resulted in such an interesting abstract. I like the form of the poem as well: brings the words and image together in a more powerful impact. Very clever.

Premasagar said...

Beautiful creations! Thank you.

pepektheassassin said...

As always....

Anonymous said...

Hmm, very interesting but I feel there's somthing wrong with this... the cat is hardly aware of what it's whiskers look like. To a cat whiskers must be felt as a side of the mouth vibration (for sizing) or a long narrow slick sensation on tongue when cleaning them.

If cats have visual associations I think they must relate to chasing things that look like mice, running away from predator-like shapes (dogs) etc. Only people would relate clematis seedheads to whiskers.