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Anna Letitia Waring (1823-1910)

FINIS. To the Superior Animal


              1To sum up all, I'm old -- and that's
              2   A fact the years decide;
              3It is a common thing with cats
              4   And not a thing to hide.

              5But to feel what it is -- how kind
              6   How true to love and law
              7For this you must be quite resigned
              8   And not avoid its paw.

              9It does not come as reckless foe
            10   A shrinking prey to take,
            11But with soft footstep that we know
            12   By comfort in its wake.

            13Though it spoils something -- that is true,
            14   Which we must learn to lack
            15And takes alike from me and you
            16   What never does come back.

            17It caters for our failing strength
            18   In many a dainty scrap,
            19And gently lays us at our length
            20   In some secluded lap.

            21It may bless you -- (I think it should)
            22   Beyond what I make out,
            23With things perhaps too great and good
            24   For cats to talk about.

            25Since I find in it blessing free
            26   From all it can destroy,
            27And so its progress is to me
            28   A miracle of joy.

            29But my look out to occupy
            30   And make the most of that.
            31You must be quite as old as I,
            32   If not yourself a Cat!


Online text copyright © 2003, Ian Lancashire for the Department of English, University of Toronto.
Published by the Web Development Group, Information Technology Services, University of Toronto Libraries.

Original text: A. L. Waring, Hymns and Meditations, new edn. (London: Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, 1911): 20-21. 04430.a.1 British Library
RPO poem editor: Ian Lancashire
RP edition: RPO 2001
Recent editing: 2:2002/2/28

Rhyme: abab


Other poems by Anna Letitia Waring