I’ve written many poems about my family’s cat. Here’s another one for the collection. Peace to your ♥ !


Of virtuous traits, Buddy has a few.
He’s happy rising at five-thirty, too,
From what I can tell, and he doesn’t smell,
Or not often. He eats the same dry food
Day in, day out, with a good cattitude
And doesn’t ignore the bits on the floor.
He endures all sorts of indignities:
Being cooed at; being swaddled when he’s
Getting his nails clipped; having liquid dripped
On his neck, for fleas, without his consent;
And, for hairballs, his paw smeared with ointment.
He’s content to nap on anyone’s lap
But snubbed, accepts his fate with feline grace.
Likewise when the four girls get in his face—
No angry meow. And finally, how
Handsome he is, and low-key, just like us.
In our book, Buddy’s an A+++.

© Stephanie Malley

NaPoWriMo20 Day 29 - Write a paean to your pet. Thank you to Maureen Thorson at NaPoWriMo.net for the prompt. 

“Morning Prayer for Mice”

Buddy has perfected the art of sleeping. He’ll rise from his basket, stretch, wander into the kitched for a bite to eat and drink, then head back to his basket for a well-deserved rest. I’m jealous. Peace to your ♥ !

Morning Prayer for Mice

Bless this cat.
Bless this house.
Bless us, each
And every mouse.
Buddy hunts
With feline mettle
But only for
A place to settle.
Give us this day
Our mice hijinks
While Buddy catches
Forty winks.

© Stephanie Malley

“Interior Cat”

Buddy is an indoor cat, though he doesn’t have unlimited use of the house. The steps leading upstairs are blocked off by a piece of cardboard he could jump over if he were smart enough to realize it. He also gets put down the basement at night, where he has a number of comfortable sleeping options, among them the top of a canvas suitcase. Sometimes he’s so ready to call it a day, he waits by the basement door for one of his people to accompany him downstairs for his nightly brushing; other times we have to gently tip him off the chair he’s snoozing on. Rough life!

Peace to your !

 Interior Cat

 Who needs an interior decorator
 When you have an interior cat?
 Our Buddy’s classic cat design
 Looks good on anything flat.

 Why get caught up in color schemes
 And matching this hue or that?
 Every rug, afghan and throw pillow
 Goes well with our black-and-white cat.

 Why spend money on knickknacks 
 That just gather dust on the shelf?
 No china cat compares with ours;
 He practically cleans himself.

 © Stephanie Malley


There’s a fine line between “pet me” and “hands off,” but only Buddy knows where that line is, and most days, he’s not telling. Peace to your ♥ !


Everything’s good. He’s peaceful and calm.
His presence is soothing. His purring is balm.

I could lie here with Buddy for hours on end,
But suddenly, somehow, we’re no longer friends.

He’s swatting at me with claws that need clipping
And baring his teeth for a bout of cat nipping.

What a fickle, despicable thing to do!
Suddenly, somehow, it’s high time I shoo.

© Stephanie Malley

“A Cat’s Home is His Castle”

It’s a good thing cats aren’t predisposed to big egos; if all the admiration went to Buddy’s head, it would be enormous. Peace to your ♥ !

 A Cat’s Home is His Castle

The cushion on the bookshelf is His Royal Highness’ throne,
And Buddy, when he reigns there, is seldom all alone.
One subject comes to shake his paw; the next, to stroke his fur;
A third to scratch behind his ears in hopes to hear him purr.
The final subject simply sits and gazes at his face,
As though to etch each whisker in her memory just in case
Some unexpected Act of Man hitherto unknown
Should erase the hundred photos of King Buddy from her phone.

© Stephanie Malley

“A Cat by Any Other Name”

One of the big differences between cats and dogs…

 A Cat by Any Other Name

He isn’t deaf, he isn’t dumb,
And still we cannot make him come.
Try Buddy, Budster, Mr. Man.
He moves not, though we know he can.

Try also Buds, The Boy, Buttface.
The Boy at rest remains in place.
Call him this, or call him that,
He’s not coming, and that is cat.

© Stephanie Malley

Peace to your ♥ !

“My Buddy” / “Catnapping”

Of my family, I’m the least enamored of Buddy, yet he still considers me his MIP (most important person). Go figure! :)

Peace to your ♥ !

 My Buddy

In Buddy’s heart, I take first place because I give him Buddy-space.
The others, who give him no rest, must be content with second-best.

© Stephanie Malley


It never fails. While Buddy’s sleeping,
One or another girl comes creeping,
Snatches him up and, not getting caught,
Succeeds in another catnapping plot.

© Stephanie Malley


Sometimes I know what book I’m looking for at the library, and sometimes I scan the shelves hoping to find something good, with varying results. Poetry for Cats: The Definitive Anthology of Distinguished Feline Verse, which I stumbled across at my local library, proved so enjoyable, I bought myself a used copy, given to Meg with love from Joanne and Bob (“May you spend many happy hours curled up in front of the fire reading this”). Thank you, Meg. Your trash is my treasure.

In this anthology, Henry Beard parodies well-known poems, each one “written” by the poet’s cat from a cat’s point of view. John Donne’s cat gives us “Vet, Be Not Proud” while William Carlos Williams’s cat offers up “The Yellow Goldfish.” How Beard managed to successfully parody 39 poems, I’ll never know. I do know that I crack up whenever I read the line “Short-haired Hrodent-slayer” (“Grendel’s Dog,” from Beocat, by the Old English Epic’s Unknown Author’s Cat, Modern English verse translation by the Editor’s Cat). I suspect that majoring in English in college has something to do with it.

It appeared at one time that our cat Buddy had poetic aspirations, but nothing has come of it, for him at least. For me the occasion inspired the following poem. Peace to your ♥ !


Over the keyboard Buddy goes.
Composing what? Cat only knows.
He typed a string of p’s and o’s
That I would label pawful prose.

But what if he meant p-o-e?
Or even (yes!) p-o-e-t?
If paws were hands, this cat could be
The feline Poe of poetry.

© Stephanie Malley