Cat Poetry: The Cat’s Meow Playlist & Prompt

Cat poetry has been around for a long time. And why not? Cats are just so intriguing, even if you prefer not to have one sharing a house with you.

Having slept, the cat gets up,
yawns, goes out
to make love.

–Kobayashi Issa (1763-1827)

Now you can get your cat poetry via our fun “Cats” playlist. From Cat Power (the group); to Cat Stevens (the individual artist); to Spanish, French, and German cat lyrics, we’ve got it all… even Rocky! (Eye of the Tiger). Click play, and start up our new writing theme for the month: Cats.

Poetry Prompt

Try out an Issa-style cat poem. Give us a simple picture of a cat doing something… simple. Three lines. That’s all you need.

Thanks to our participants in last week’s poetry prompt. Here’s a recent ghazal we enjoyed from Maureen…

Charming Billy: A Mash-up Ghazal

Oh, where have you been, Billy boy, Billy boy?
Write a letter to me, love, don’t be coy, Billy boy.

The cat’s in the cupboard and he can’t see us.
And Daddy’s gone a hunting. Jump for joy, Billy boy.

Mid pleasures and palaces, bells are sweetly ringing.
We are floating in sunshine. Yes, attaboy, Billy boy!

Sixty minutes make an hour. My babe to sleep he goes.
O fiddle-de-dee, O baby dearest, I can’t enjoy Billy boy.

The skies with storms are laden. Nature calls but calls in vain.
Softly sighs the voice of evening, you me annoy, Billy boy.

Bobby Shafto’s gone to sea now; his training’s just begun.
And when the drumbeats call to war, you’ll too deploy, Billy boy.

Oh, diddle, diddle dumpling, my Highland laddie’s gone.
And if a frog he would a wooing, I would destroy Billy boy.

All is still in sweetest rest, Maureen. Thou needst no longer weep.
A ship, his ship’s a sailing. So bid ahoy, Billy boy

—Maureen Doallas

Photo by alessandrobl, Creative Commons, via Flickr.


Sometimes we feature your poems in Every Day Poems, with your permission of course. Thanks for writing with us!

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  1. Jon Lewis says

    Poor Pat Poor Pat
    Poor Pat the Asthmatic cat
    Listen to him cough and sneeze
    Listen to him gasp and wheeze
    Can there be no worse times than these?

    For Pat For Pat
    For Pat the Asthmatic Cat
    Never any time to purr or lick
    Climb or chase a mouse or chick
    Can you imagine being, to yourself allergic?

  2. Marcy Terwilliger says

    Two new kittens have I, both are Bengals what a surprise. They run and play rough all day then fall asleep wherever they may.

  3. says

    This is a form called a Triolet. I wrote this a while ago and it is the antithesis of a cute cat poem, but it does have a cat in it. I think the inspiration for this may have been Van Morrison’s song TB Sheets.

    Cough and Cat

    I feel the yellow air move when I cough;
    you look at each other, then the door.
    It’s OK, not much now puts me off.
    I see the yellow air move when I cough,
    rubs up against me like an old cat, rough
    and strange and mangy fellow that
    purrs inside the yellow windows when I cough.
    He wants outside, but years have left him fat.

  4. says


    Three tears in the color of night,
    blue eyes, pink tongue,
    and like mine, a voice so slight.

    The pair of us they would say,
    my bummer cat,
    looking for a home, then the day

    I cleaned you up, night’s hue
    like desert sky,
    brilliant dark, the stars of you.


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