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

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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.
Death Poems
  1. 1. Let Me Die A Youngman's Death
    Roger McGough
  2. 2. And Death Shall Have No Dominion
    Dylan Thomas
  3. 3. Death Is Nothing At All
    Henry Scott Holland
  4. 4. Death Be Not Proud
    John Donne
  5. 5. Because I Could Not Stop For Death
    Emily Dickinson
  6. 6. Nothing But Death
    Pablo Neruda
  7. 7. A Dream Of Death
    William Butler Yeats
  8. 8. A Refusal To Mourn The Death, By Fire, O..
    Dylan Thomas
  9. 9. Father Death Blues
    Allen Ginsberg
  10. 10. A Death Blow Is A Life Blow To Some
    Emily Dickinson
  11. 11. A Poet's Death Is His Life Iv
    Khalil Gibran
  12. 12. Death Wants More Death
    Charles Bukowski
  13. 13. An Irish Airman Forsees His Death
    William Butler Yeats
  14. 14. Death
    Rainer Maria Rilke
  15. 15. The Beauty Of Death Xiv
    Khalil Gibran
  16. 16. Death Xxvii
    Khalil Gibran
  17. 17. The Death Of The Ball Turret Gunner
    Randall Jarrell
  18. 18. After Death
    Sara Teasdale
  19. 19. The Death Of Joy Gardner
    Benjamin Zephaniah
  20. 20. A City's Death By Fire
    Derek Walcott
  21. 21. A Funeral Poem On The Death Of C. E. An ..
    Phillis Wheatley
  22. 22. A Thought For A Lonely Death-Bed
    Elizabeth Barrett Browning
  23. 23. First Death In Nova Scotia
    Elizabeth Bishop
  24. 24. Death Leaves Us Homesick, Who Behind
    Emily Dickinson
  25. 25. Gacela Of The Dark Death
    Federico García Lorca
  26. 26. A Ballad Of Death
    Algernon Charles Swinburne
  27. 27. On The Death Of A Young Lady Of Five Yea..
    Phillis Wheatley
  28. 28. Go Down, Death
    James Weldon Johnson
  29. 29. Holy Sonnet X: Death Be Not Proud
    John Donne
  30. 30. Death &Amp; Fame
    Allen Ginsberg
  31. 31. The Death Of The Hired Man
    Robert Frost
  32. 32. On The Death Of Anne Brontë
    Charlotte Brontë
  33. 33. I Have A Rendezvous With Death
    Alan Seeger
  34. 34. Death Fugue
    Paul Celan
  35. 35. Love &Amp; Fame &Amp; Death
    Charles Bukowski
  36. 36. On The Death Of That Most Excellent Lady,
    Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz
  37. 37. For The Anniversary Of My Death
    William Stanley Merwin
  38. 38. If Death Is Kind
    Sara Teasdale
  39. 39. On Death
    Anne Killigrew
  40. 40. Fugue Of Death
    Paul Celan
  41. 41. Death
    William Butler Yeats
  42. 42. As At Thy Portals Also Death
    Walt Whitman
  43. 43. Death Stands Above Me, Whispering Low
    Walter Savage Landor
  44. 44. All But Death, Can Be Adjusted
    Emily Dickinson
  45. 45. An Elegy On The Death Of Kenneth Patchen
    Lawrence Ferlinghetti
  46. 46. Death
    Heinrich Heine
  47. 47. On Hearing Of A Death
    Rainer Maria Rilke
  48. 48. The Death Of The Flowers
    William Cullen Bryant
  49. 49. A Death-Bed
    Rudyard Kipling
  50. 50. A Satirical Elegy On The Death Of A Late..
    Jonathan Swift

Death Poems

  1. Death Be Not Proud

    Death be not proud, though some have called thee Mighty and dreadfull, for, thou art not soe, For, those, whom thou think'st, thou dost overthrow, Die not, poore death, nor yet canst thou kill mee. From rest and sleepe, which but thy pictures bee, Much pleasure, then from thee, much more must flow, And soonest our best men with thee doe goe, Rest of their bones, and soules deliverie. Thou art slave to Fate, Chance, kings, and desperate men, And dost with poyson, warre, and sicknesse dwell, And poppie, or charmes can make us sleepe as well, And better then thy stroake; why swell'st thou then? One short sleepe past, wee wake eternally, And death shall be no more; death, thou shalt die.

  2. Let Me Die A Youngman's Death

    Let me die a youngman's death not a clean and inbetween the sheets holywater death not a famous-last-words peaceful out of breath death When I'm 73 and in constant good tumour may I be mown down at dawn by a bright red sports car on my way home from an allnight party Or when I'm 91 with silver hair and sitting in a barber's chair may rival gangsters with hamfisted tommyguns burst in and give me a short back and insides Or when I'm 104 and banned from the Cavern may my mistress catching me in bed with her daughter and fearing for her son cut me up into little pieces and throw away every piece but one Let me die a youngman's death not a free from sin tiptoe in candle wax and waning death not a curtains drawn by angels borne 'what a nice way to go' death

  3. And Death Shall Have No Dominion

    And death shall have no dominion. Dead man naked they shall be one With the man in the wind and the west moon; When their bones are picked clean and the clean bones gone, They shall have stars at elbow and foot; Though they go mad they shall be sane, Though they sink through the sea they shall rise again; Though lovers be lost love shall not; And death shall have no dominion. And death shall have no dominion. Under the windings of the sea They lying long shall not die windily; Twisting on racks when sinews give way, Strapped to a wheel, yet they shall not break; Faith in their hands shall snap in two, And the unicorn evils run them through; Split all ends up they shan't crack; And death shall have no dominion. And death shall have no dominion. No more may gulls cry at their ears Or waves break loud on the seashores; Where blew a flower may a flower no more Lift its head to the blows of the rain; Though they be mad and dead as nails, Heads of the characters hammer through daisies; Break in the sun till the sun breaks down, And death shall have no dominion.

  4. Because I Could Not Stop For Death

    Because I could not stop for Death- He kindly stopped for me- The Carriage held but just Ourselves- And Immortality. We slowly drove- He knew no haste And I had put away My labor and my leisure too, For His Civility- We passed the School, where Children strove At Recess- in the Ring- We passed the Fields of Gazing Grain- We passed the Setting Sun- Or rather- He passed us- The Dews drew quivering and chill- For only Gossamer, my Gown- My Tippet- only Tulle- We paused before a House that seemed A Swelling of the Ground- The Roof was scarcely visible- The Cornice- in the Ground- Since then- 'tis Centuries- and yet Feels shorter than the Day I first surmised the Horses' Heads Were toward Eternity-

  5. Death Is Nothing At All

    Death is nothing at all. I have only slipped away to the next room. I am I and you are you. Whatever we were to each other, That, we still are. Call me by my old familiar name. Speak to me in the easy way which you always used. Put no difference into your tone. Wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow. Laugh as we always laughed at the little jokes we enjoyed together. Play, smile, think of me. Pray for me. Let my name be ever the household word that it always was. Let it be spoken without effect. Without the trace of a shadow on it. Life means all that it ever meant. It is the same that it ever was. There is absolute unbroken continuity. Why should I be out of mind because I am out of sight? I am but waiting for you. For an interval. Somewhere. Very near. Just around the corner. All is well. Nothing is past; nothing is lost. One brief moment and all will be as it was before only better, infinitely happier and forever we will all be one together with Christ.

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