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Cat Island - Poem by Thom Gunn

Cats met us at
the landing-place
reclining in the sun
to check us in
with a momentary glance,
concierges
of a grassy island.
(Attila's Throne,
the Devil's Bridge,
and "the best Byzantine
church in the world",
long saints admonitory
on kiln-like inner walls.)
And lunch in a shady court
where cats now
systematically worked
the restaurant, table
by table, gazing into eyes
pleading "I'm hungry
and I'm cute", reaching
front paws up to knees
and always getting
before zeroing in
on the next table, same
routine, same result.

Sensible bourgeois
wild-cats working
with the furred impudence
of those who don't pretend
to be other than whores,
they give you not
the semblance of love
but simply
a look at their beauty
in return for food.
Models, not escorts.
They lack, too,
the prostitute's self-pity,
being beyond shame.
And we lack
what they have.


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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. Having Slept, The Cat Gets Up , Kobayashi Issa
  8. 8. The Cat And The Moon , William Butler Yeats
  9. 9. For I Will Consider My Cat Jeoffry (Exce.. , Christopher Smart
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  12. 12. Ad Lesbiam, Cat. Ep. 73 , Richard Lovelace
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  15. 15. A Cat Named Frank , Marilyn Lott
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  18. 18. Cat Island , Thom Gunn
  19. 19. The Cat Of Cats , William Brighty Rands
  20. 20. Cat Scat , Eamon Grennan
  21. 21. The Mysterious Cat , Vachel Lindsay
  22. 22. In Lesbiam Cat. Ep. 76. , Richard Lovelace
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  31. 31. The Cat , Jibanananda Das
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  35. 35. No-Name The Cat , David Lewis Paget
  36. 36. Separate Cat , Lonnie Hicks
  37. 37. 003: The Cat Tray , Colin Johnston
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