Sunday, 25 September 2011

Poetry Please

Well, versifying, at least, if not poetry. The second ebook I published on Kindle is The Verminator and Other Cat Monster Poems.

Unlike “Be A Quiz Winner !” this wasn’t written to be sold. The first poem, “Tabula” – (Tabby Dracula ) came to me almost fully formed while I was invigilating an exam at work. As soon as the exam was over I jotted it down , and that was that. Or so I thought.

In fairness, this wasn’t that uncommon an occurrence. Back in the days when I first became connected to the net, I joined an online community. It was a lot of fun, and one of the things we used to do was to play a game called poetry tag. As a game, it basically does exactly what it says on the tin. A poem is written, and at the end the poet leaves a tag, based on something within the poem. The next one to play has to write a poem which fits with the tag, and leave a new tag etc. etc. I’m not suggesting that this is a recipe for real poetry at all, but it was fun, and it did show me that I enjoy versifying very much.

So, I wrote Tabula quite a few years ago. To be fair to the poem I did use it from time to time with classes in school, where I teach English. In the poem , which you can read at the end of this post, I mentioned two other monster cats, Furry Fred, and Baron Catkinstein. Several of the children at work asked me if I had written poems about these two. Well, it was a challenge.

I left it at the three of them for a while, but over a period of a year or two I would come back every now and then and add another monster cat to the group. Eventually this came to encompass the 14 poems that make the collection.

Why cats ? Why not ? ! As it is cats are the only pets I’ve ever had. I’m owned by two of them at the moment – Hero and Gus. I’ve illustrated each of the poems – if you do decide to buy on Kindle I’m afraid that you won’t be able to see them, since I was unable to transfer them across. However if you buy on CDROM you get the illustrations at no extra cost ! OK – hard sell over – here’s Tabula.


A monster lurks down our street
With an evil yellow eye
He's mean and he's green
And he's always seen
When the full moon's in the sky
He's worse than a wolf, or a bat
Or a rat
And he'll give you a bigger fright.
He's Tabula, the vampire cat
And he haunts the lanes all night.

He comes from Catsylvania,
At least, that's what they say.
But nobody knows
Where he always goes
When the night turns into day.
Is it a tomb where a ghost cat groans ?
Does he sleep among the dead
Where his kitty coffin guards his bones
Until the daylight's fled ?

He would give a rabbit nightmares
He can make alsatians shiver
He can rip apart
A hamster's heart
And mash a mouse's liver.
He's known to Baron Catkinstein
Who raises up the dead,
And a fearsome beast
Joins his nightly feast,
The were-cat, Furry Fred.

We keep our pets indoors at night
By bribing them with treats.
So you'll never see a stray cat stroll
In our moonlit, silent streets.
You'll never hear a barking dog,
Nor the hoot of a lonely owl
When Tabula, the vampire cat
Sets off on his nightly prowl.

The link to the Kindle version of the book is in My Books and Websites on the right

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