For this week’s ‘five minutes peace in a crazy world’ poem, I have selected a verse from Christmas Poems by U.A. Fanthorpe and published by Enitharmon. This wonderful collection brings together poems sent by Fanthorpe to friends under the guise of Christmas cards between the period of 1974 to 2002. Each one is a delight and as Fanthorpe writes in the introduction:
“The advantage of Christmas, to a poet, is that it brings a captive audience. Friends may jib at reading poems, full-length intimidating poems, but a Christmas card can slip under anyone’s guard.”
It is a defiant lament by the creature who never quite made it into the Christmas story…
Cat in the Manger
In the story, I’m not there.
Ox and ass, arranged at prayer:
But me? Nowhere.
How on earth could you have missed
Such an obvious and able
Occupant of the stable?
Who excluded mouse and rat?
The harmless necessary cat.
Who snuggled in with the holy pair?
Me. And my purr.
Matthew, Mark, Luke and John,
(Who got it wrong,
Who left out the cat)
Wherever He went in this great affair
I was there.