This poem was originally published in the 2016 Mendocino Poets in the Schools Anthology, alongside dozens of poems by my students. Recently, I was teaching rhyme to a class of fourth graders when one student raised her hand and said, “Why don’t we read your cat poem?” I was delighted. To be famous to your students is like Naomi Shihab Nye’s river being famous to the fish.
Cat Gone Two Weeks
by Jasper Henderson
Cat be nimble Cat be quick Cat sleep on window And then get sick Cat be happy Cat be sad Cat bites ankle Cat is mad Cat be bored Cat be aware Cat hear noise Cat get scared Cat be fat Cat be in love Master’s home Time for a rub Cat be hungry Cat meows Food bowl refilled Cat chows Cat in the hat Cat in a box Cat in a fight Sounds like a fox Cat is tired Cat takes a nap Cat wins a job The better mouse trap Cat on a fence Cat in a hole Cat in hiding place Where did cat go? Cat has gone out Cat is due back Where could cat be? Alas and alack! Cat has gone missing Cat just flat gone Cat left no clue Cat left no song Cat was so mean Cat did us wrong Cat gone two weeks Cat gone too long Cat came back! Just yesterday Cat sauntered in We said hoo-ray! Cat is the best Cat is my friend Cat needs a rest So this is the end