Richard George

Rookie (June 1,1965 / Cheltenham, U.K.)

Sylvia Plath's Cats

Poem by Richard George

Their breath was clean, or harsh and sour
according to her moods:
and when they sensed a coming storm
they crept into corners.
Today she is a remote eminence,
tall and cold as Alaska:
but the cats understood her
as something young and brittle
like bamboo
that cuts you when it breaks.
When she died, apart from them
they felt her passing over
as a seismic change of frequency:
they never quite forgot her
and when something reminded them
they purred, nervously.

No one writes their biography.

Comments about Sylvia Plath's Cats by Richard George

  • Raynette Eitel (5/23/2005 4:00:00 PM)

    This tugs at my heartstrings. When you lose someone, you often forget the cats in the corner who suffer a loss. This is really a good poem. I am not crazy about the line comparing Plath to Alaska...not thinking it falls into the whole metaphor, but the sadness and irony of only the cats knowing her seismic energy is masterful. Thanks.


    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Linda Preston (4/17/2005 7:48:00 AM)

    Me, too. I keep coming back to re-read it. There is something very ethereal about this poem.(Report)Reply

    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Leigh Mia (4/14/2005 11:01:00 AM)

    I love this poem! It is so different. I never would have thought of such an idea... I'm jealous.(Report)Reply

    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Linda Preston (4/2/2005 3:19:00 PM)

    I like 'purred nervously' - yep, conveys her instability. Methinks another ten.(Report)Reply

    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
Read all 4 comments »

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Read poems about / on: today, change, cat

Poem Submitted: Saturday, April 2, 2005