Fred the Philanderer
Old Fred sits on the market cross and watches the world go by
And every so often he nods his head and closes his one good eye.
He dreams of the days of long ago when he was a strong young cat
And all the queens in the neighbourhood were very glad about that.
He remembers Belle, the pedigree girl, who made her escape one night,
And the toms who came from miles around, and how he won the fight,
Then how the two of them, ginger and white, both painted the town
And everyone knew when Belle’s kittens were born that she’d mis-behaved with Fred.
For all the kittens had pure white coats the same as their mother had,
Except for each little ginger tail — a legacy from their dad.
Now old Fred sits, enjoying the sun, reliving the times he’s had,
Recalling with satisfaction how he once was ‘a bit of a lad’
And when at last he is no more and the market cross is bare
He will always be remembered — his spirit will live on there.
He’s left his mark on the neighbourhood, and, indeed, right down the dale,
For many a kitten still today is born with a ginger tail!
This beautiful poem and painting are from the book Cats And Doggerel by S.O.F.A. member Daphne Langham. Daphne had generously donated copies of her lovely book as rewards for donations in the SOFA fundraising campaign. You can get her book here https://societyoffelineartists.org/collections/fundraising
The Society Of Feline Artists is raising funds for a big cat art exhibition in London in 2019.