The Greater Cats
The greater cats with golden eyes
Stare out between the bars.
Deserts are there, and the different skies,
And night with different stars.
They prowl the aromatic hill,
And mate as fiercely as they kill,
To roam, to live, to drink their fill;
But this beyond their wit know I:
Man loves a little, and for long shall die.
Their kind across the desert range
Where tulips spring from stones,
Not knowing they will suffer change
Or vultures pick their bones.
Their strength's eternal in their sight,
They overtake the deer in flight,
And in their arrogance they smite;
But I am sage, if they are strong:
Man's love is transient as his death is long.
Yet oh what powers to deceive!
My wit is turned to faith,
And at this moment I believe
In love, and scout at death.
I came from nowhere, and shall be
Strong, steadfast, swift, eternally:
I am a lion, a stone, a tree,
And as the Polar star in me
Is fixed my constant heart on thee.
Ah, may I stay forever blind
With lions, tigers, leopards, and their kind.
Victoria Sackville-West's Other Poems
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Comments about this poem (The Greater Cats by Victoria Sackville-West )
(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973)
(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
(28 November 1757 – 12 August 1827)
William Butler Yeats
(13 June 1865 – 28 January 1939)
(27 October 1914 – 9 November 1953)
(January 6, 1883 – April 10, 1931)
Alfred Lord Tennyson
(6 August 1809 – 6 October 1892)
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(10 December 1830 – 15 May 1886)
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