Black cats are just miniature panthers.
They are supple and lithe, with motions
that have the sinuous grace of dancers.
Don’t be deceived by the languid manner
which resembles a perpetual lethargy
that saps the strength of these felines
as they can pounce with sudden energy,
jump higher and outrun their provider.
They are so cuddly and full of charm;
it’s unbelievable that some people think
that they bring bad luck and do harm.
For this reputation, to a certain extent,
religion has to accept responsibility.
The Pilgrims arrived at Plymouth Rock
bringing with them a devotional faith
but also an irrational fear of witchcraft
of which the black cat was the epitome.
In contrast, sailors attributed to them
supernatural powers to save lives at sea
and Egyptians were more appreciative
believing them to be magical creatures
who could bring good luck to the owners.
These pets were fed treats fit for royalty
and rich people dressed them in jewels.
But the level of devotion shown to them
went far beyond their owners’ affection
and they evolved from useful predators
to physical embodiments of the gods
and became symbols of divine protection.
© Luigi Pagano 2020
© ionicus 2023
A rich history of our feline friends, Luigi. I smiled inwardly many times whilst reading this, as your image and some imagery reminded me of my recently departed friend ‘Ludo’.
I can sympathise with your sense of loss, Allen. We experienced the same sad feelings when Toby, who looked exactly as portrayed here, left us.
Cats are very crafty. They love us as long as we give them food. Stop it or annoy them and they go elsewhere. Unlike dogs, who stick with us thick and thin and forgive almost everything we do to them. However, I have to admire their sheer cheek and a jet-black cat is definitely one of nature’s works of art.
Nice poem, Luigi
They are independent creatures, Guaj, and to a certain extent theirs is ‘cupboard love’ but they are cute and get away with it. I was quite fond of my miniature black panther.
Lovely piece. Agree with Guaj – Cats are very crafty. I remember the day after a storm and a black cat was washed up at our back door. My younger sister, bless her, put out a bowl of milk, and that act of “kindness” endeared – and i use that word carefully – it to us. It lived with us for 2 years then disappeared, only to reappear after a week. Then one day we were in the garden with the gates open and a neighbour looked in and hey ho, that cat had been theirs, became ours and was… Read more »
I experienced the same many years ago when I lived in Essex. We had a long back garden, with a bendy path, that faced a wide field across which we could see, in the distance, a big house. Our cat would saunter along the path to the boundary fence and when he felt it was time to be fed he would return. This daily routine was interrupted when he disappeared for a few months, then came back meowing all the time requesting food. This happened a few times and we discovered that he was commuting between us and the house… Read more »
Yes, multifaceted creatures. By the way, I lost my black cat Little J to a coyote prowling around our neighborhood on the edge of Phoenix. My newly adopted kitten fro the reservation is Frankie (he has blue eyes like Sinatra) and he has to stay indoors.
I am sorry to hear about Little J, Ralph.
As for Frankie, being kept indoors he won’t be able to do it ‘his way’ but at least he’ll be safer. 🙂