Cats & Their Poets
By: Maurice Craig
Publication Date: November 2002
Cats & Their Poets by Maurice Craig
Cats are universally revered, worshiped and feared, evoking love and fascination in their hosts and companions.
This delightful anthology of poems about cats, from the eighth-century Pangur Ban to the present, encompasses both the arcane and the familiar, the simple and the satisfyingly subtle. Cats & their Poets contains work by seventy-five writers, from Philip Sidney, Christopher Smart, Cowper, Keats, Rosetti, Dickinson and browning, through to Yeats, Don Marquis, Strachey, Sackville-West, Graves, MacNeice, Stevie Smith, Gavin Ewart, Hughes, Gunn, Silkin, Longley, Mahon, Ni Chuilleanain, Thomas Lynch and Vikram Seth. There are translations from Heine, Baudelaire, Verlaine, Mallarme, Valery and Apollinaire.
These wonderful poems, selected and introduced by one of Ireland’s most respected men of letters, say as much about their enigmatic creators as they do of their mysterious muses. They will surprise, illuminate and comfort the reader in equal measure.
‘Whether it is their caressibility, their demonstrably close kinship with the most magnificent predators in the world, their flexibility both moral and physical, their aesthetic sense of disposing themselves in attitudes fit to drive a sculptor to despair, their ability to come and go in utter silence, their courage when cornered, their nice judgement in knowing when to turn and flee – all these things have inspired poets to feel privileged in sharing this fragile planet with enigmatic creatures who know so much that we do not.’ – Maurice Craig
‘In many ways anthologies are like cats, good for curling up with in front of the fire but always threatening to infest your house with crap, so how better to celebrate the little beasts than with Maurice Craig’s delicious Cats & Their Poets?’ – The Guardian
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Maurice Craig (1919-2011) was born in Belfast and educated in Dalkey and Shrewsbury, and at Magdalene College, Cambridge, and Trinity College, Dublin, where he gained a doctorate in Landor studies (suggested to him by Patrick Kavanagh). An architectural historian, poet and biographer, he is the author of Mausolea Hibernica, The Elephant and the Polish Question, The Architecture of Ireland, Classic Irish Houses of the Middle Size, Irish Bookbindings, Dublin 1660-1860 and The Volunteer Earl, among other books, and edited W.S. Landor: One Hundred Poems.