Friday, April 6, 2012

Two Poems in Memory of My Cat Abby

We had to put my cat Abby to sleep this week. It was a decision that had to be made. I was at my daughter’s house Monday night when my husband called with the news that Abby was in distress. He wanted to know where the nearest animal hospital that provided 24-hour emergency services was located. Fortunately, my daughter and son-in-law knew of an excellent one not too far from our house where they had to take their dog Jack once when he got heat stress last year.
Abby had been a gift to my daughter Sara from her high school boyfriend—a really fine young man. He got Abby for Sara after we had to have her cat Amber put to sleep. (Amber had cancer and wasn’t able to eat and barely able to walk.) Like Amber, Abby had been having some difficulty walking recently. She had a heart murmur and congestive heart failure. I'm glad that she didn't suffer for long.
Abby had been my buddy for more than fifteen years. She was a funny cat--a true character. She was also great company for me when my husband was away from home on extended business trips.
You can catch a glimpse of Abby in the lower right-hand corner of the picture below.

I thought I’d write a poem—a Fib—in memory of Abby this morning:

Purry friend
Cuddler on the couch
My comforter curled beside me

Here’s a cat mask poem that Abby inspired. I posted it some time ago at Wild Rose Reader.


I’m cat.
Come pat
My head.
I’ll purr.
Please stroke
My thick
And silky fur.
I’m clean,
I lick.
I preen.
I’m naughty…
I’m the queen.

Win a Poetry Book!
Every week during April, I’ll be giving away a children’s poetry book at
Wild Rose Reader. If you leave a comment at one of my poetry posts during the first week of National Poetry Month (April 1-7), I’ll enter your name in the drawing to win a copy of Poem in Your Pocket for Young Poets: 100 Poems to Rip Out & Read. The poems were selected by Bruno Navasky and the book was published in conjunction with The Academy of American Poets. (Note: If you leave comments at two of my poetry posts, I'll enter your name twice...and so on.) The winner of the book will be announced next Sunday (April 8th).

The Poetry Friday Roundup is at Read, Write, Howl this week.


Linda B said...

Oh Elaine, it's so hard to say goodbye to our pets. Your poems are beautiful and clearly heartfelt. I'm sorry for your loss of Abby. I love that first "furry, purry friend" and all the photos, but that last one shows Abby to be such a gorgeous cat.

Elaine Magliaro said...


I felt terrible that I wasn't at home Monday night--and that I couldn't be with Abby when she was put to sleep. I was comforted when my husband told me how wonderful the veternarian and others were at the animal hospital.

It is hard to say goodbye to our pets. They are like members of the family.

jama said...

So sorry to hear about Abby, Elaine. What a beauty she was. Love your cat poems. ((hugs))

Elaine Magliaro said...


Thanks. I think Abby will be our last pet. She's the third cat that we had to have put to sleep. To be sure, all our cats were treated like queens and were well-loved during their lives.

Janet Wong said...

Elaine: Your beautiful poems are a great tribute to Abby and really capture the essence of cats. She was lucky to have you as "her person." (And how interesting that to prove I'm "not a robot" one of the "words" that I need to type in below is "helpfur." Maybe Abby is communicating with us and telling us that this is what you were: her helpfur!)

Barbara O'Connor said...

Aw, sorry. Our pets are such good souls and enrich us so much. A lovely tribute from you to Abby.

Charles Waters said...

Oh goodness I'm so sorry about the passing of your beloved Abby. She's no longer in any pain if that's any consolation. Miss you Elaine.

Donna Smith said...

I am sorry to hear about the loss of your cat. They are such great buddies to have. You've written some lovely poems and are fortunate to have some gorgeous pictures of her! You do really need another cat. I know it's hard when they get older, but they are so much company and they all have such interesting personalities. I hope you do go for it!

Elaine Magliaro said...

Thanks for your kind words, everyone. Abby liked to sit next to me on a ladderback chair when I worked at my computer. What I'll miss most was her cuddling next to me on the sofa when I read the newspaper and drank a cup of coffee in the morning.

Mary Lee said...

Condolences. Our pets' lives are far too brief compared to the amount of space they take up in our hearts.

LOVE the mask poem and the photo of her! Perfect tribute.

Robyn Hood Black said...

Sending heartfelt wishes, Elaine - I still miss my old kitty who was my "reading buddy" with me on the couch. Abby apparently had quite the royal life, which she deserved I'm sure. Beautiful tributes you've shared - thank you.

Ruth said...

I'm sorry! I'm so glad you have poems and photos!

skanny17 said...

My mother says that some of us are "cat people". My condolences on the loss of your furry, love, Abby. We are currently catless, but memories of the beloved departed live on. Love your two cat poems which I will share with my mother(86) who adores her red tabby. I am new to the poetry blogosphere, but I "met" you at NCTE. I look forward to getting to "know" you better. Meanwhile, I have to say I love the naughty, haughty Queen line!!!Cat people know. Kali Dakos encourages "goodbye poems" and I feel like your Fib is a great one of those.
Janet F. poetry on parade

Bridget R. Wilson said...

Elaine, sorry to hear about Abby. I'm more of a dog person, but I know how much pets can mean. Lovely poems.