This morning as I checked my email, I was interrupted by the incessant meowing of my cat Sparkle nudging my legs and scratching at the cabinet. She does this every morning in the hopes that I will pet her. Or possibly she wants to be fed. Or maybe she just feels she deserves more attention than my computer, who knows? Her sister, Snow, is too haughty to beg that early in the morning and sat a few feet away, watching us contemptuously.
Idly, I wondered how many poems have been written with animals in mind, since so many of us share our lives with pets, and this, of course, made me think of the poem spark, since it is Monday. I thought that I would have to do a lot of searching for examples of poetry about animals, but in fact, I turned up far too many excellent poems to include in one little spark. I even found an interesting essay on the subject at Poets.org: Poems for Animals and Pets.
There seem to me to be so many different kinds of poems that that are about animals: poems about our pets, poems about wild animals, poems that speak with an animal’s voice, poems that make a metaphor for some human experience using an animal. There are many more, too many to count. Here are this week’s examples:
Ted Kooser An Epiphany
Jane Hirshfield Heat
Philip Levine Dog Poem
Mary TallMountain The Last Wolf
Jane Kenyon In the Nursing Home
Deborah Digges Darwin’s Finches
William Carlos Williams Poem (As the cat)
This week’s spark: write an animal poem. It may be about any animal, any experience. Be creative and have fun!