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Ode On The Death Of A Favourite Cat Drowned In A Tub Of Goldfishes - Poem by Thomas Gray

'Twas on a lofty vase's side,
Where China's gayest art had dy'd
The azure flow'rs that blow;
Demurest of the tabby kind,
The pensive Selima, reclin'd,
Gazed on the lake below.

Her conscious tail her joy declar'd;
The fair round face, the snowy beard,
The velvet of her paws,
Her coat, that with the tortoise vies,
Her ears of jet, and emerald eyes,
She saw: and purr'd applause.

Still had she gaz'd; but 'midst the tide
Two angel forms were seen to glide,
The Genii of the stream;
Their scaly armour's Tyrian hue
Thro' richest purple to the view
Betray'd a golden gleam.

The hapless Nymph with wonder saw:
A whisker first and then a claw,
With many an ardent wish,
She stretch'd in vain to reach the prize.
What female heart can gold despise?
What cat's averse to fish?

Presumptuous Maid! with looks intent
Again she stretch'd, again she bent,
Nor knew the gulf between.
(Malignant Fate sat by, and smil'd)
The slipp'ry verge her feet beguil'd,
She tumbled headlong in.

Eight times emerging from the flood
She mew'd to ev'ry wat'ry god,
Some speedy aid to send.
No Dolphin came, no Nereid stirr'd;
Nor cruel Tom, nor Susan heard.
A Fav'rite has no friend!

From hence, ye Beauties, undeceiv'd,
Know, one false step is ne'er retriev'd,
And be with caution bold.
Not all that tempts your wand'ring eyes
And heedless hearts is lawful prize,
Nor all, that glisters, gold.


Comments about Ode On The Death Of A Favourite Cat Drowned In A Tub Of Goldfishes by Thomas Gray

  • Rookie Craig Paterson (10/21/2018 4:16:00 PM)

    Choice of words/descriptions, although humerous, are brilliant. (Report) Reply

    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Rookie Sylvia (11/21/2017 9:08:00 PM)

    This poem is, to me, a heartbreaker. I have loved all cats my whole life., as did my entire family. (Report) Reply

    1 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Rookie Hope Dyer (6/9/2005 7:26:00 PM)

    Okay, i need a little help here. I'm writing an oral for my year 10 lit class at Geelong Grammar and i'm having a hard time deciphering it. Any info would be greatly appreciated. thanks (Report) Reply

    5 person liked.
    1 person did not like.
Read all 3 comments »

Poems About Cat

  1. 1. Black Cat , Rainer Maria Rilke
  2. 2. The Owl And The Pussy-Cat , Edward Lear
  3. 3. Tame Cat , Ezra Pound
  4. 4. Poem (As The Cat) , William Carlos Williams
  5. 5. Lullaby For The Cat , Elizabeth Bishop
  6. 6. A Cat , Edward Thomas
  7. 7. Ode On The Death Of A Favourite Cat Drow.. , Thomas Gray
  8. 8. Having Slept, The Cat Gets Up , Kobayashi Issa
  9. 9. The Cat And The Moon , William Butler Yeats
  10. 10. Pussy-Cat , Spike Milligan
  11. 11. For I Will Consider My Cat Jeoffry (Exce.. , Christopher Smart
  12. 12. Ad Lesbiam, Cat. Ep. 73 , Richard Lovelace
  13. 13. To Mrs Reynolds' Cat , John Keats
  14. 14. The Cat And The Sea , Ronald Stuart Thomas
  15. 15. A Cat Named Frank , Marilyn Lott
  16. 16. The Cat Of Cats , William Brighty Rands
  17. 17. The Poem Cat , Erica Jong
  18. 18. Cat Island , Thom Gunn
  19. 19. The Mysterious Cat , Vachel Lindsay
  20. 20. Cat , David SmithWhite
  21. 21. Cat Scat , Eamon Grennan
  22. 22. In Lesbiam Cat. Ep. 76. , Richard Lovelace
  23. 23. To A Cat , Algernon Charles Swinburne
  24. 24. A Cat , Louise Bizzari
  25. 25. Free Cat , Chuck Audette
  26. 26. Cat Among The Chickens , Nick Hilton
  27. 27. ! Cat Skills , Michael Shepherd
  28. 28. The Cat Is Free , Adeline Foster
  29. 29. The Young Rat And His Dam, The Cock And .. , Anne Kingsmill Finch
  30. 30. Cat-Pie , Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
  31. 31. The Cat , Jibanananda Das
  32. 32. (310) Our Cat (Tiger) , Melvina Germain
  33. 33. The Cat That Came To Tea , sylvia spencer
  34. 34. My Cat , Otteri Selvakumar
  35. 35. No-Name The Cat , David Lewis Paget
  36. 36. Separate Cat , Lonnie Hicks
  37. 37. Mistress Gurton's Cat , Mary Darby Robinson
  38. 38. 003: The Cat Tray , Colin Johnston
  39. 39. The Cat , Leo Yankevich
  40. 40. Mah-Ve-Lous Cat...(Humor) * , elysabeth faslund
  41. 41. Sister Cat , Frances Mayes
  42. 42. Who Will Bell The Cat? , Dr Kamran Haider Bukhari
  43. 43. The Retired Cat , William Cowper
  44. 44. Funny - Fat Cat , Rita El Khoury
  45. 45. The Life Of A Cat , Laurence Overmire
  46. 46. The Eagle, The Sow, And The Cat , Anne Kingsmill Finch
  47. 47. The Cool Cat , Jasmine Aira
  48. 48. Cat Lover , Michael Philips
  49. 49. The Cat , Linda Ori
  50. 50. Cat Among The Pigeons , Herbert Nehrlich
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