Sunday, October 9, 2016

Witch Cat: The Countdown to Halloween (Day 9)

Cat sacrifices began as far back as medieval times due to Church decree that they were friends of the devil.  With their sinister-looking coats the color of deepest night or death, black cats became known as witches’ “familiars”—animals through which they could speak to the devil and the spirit world and even channel power.

These poor critters were already in danger due to Druid priests who, as far back as 2000 years ago, would use them in sacrificial rituals around Halloween in order to gain the ability to have a prophecy.

To this day, black cats are considered bringers of bad luck to those who crossed paths with one, but this is mostly a European myth.  In the British Islands, black cats are believed to bring good fortune and the same is true in Japan.  And, of course, in ancient Egypt they were worshipped as sacred.

Here’s a more friendly poem about a particular kind of cat from GHOSTS AND GOBLINS compiled by Wilhelmina Harper.

Rowena Bennett wrote plays, stories and poetry for children.  Her collections of poetry include Songs from Around a Toadstool Table: A Children’s Book of Verse (1937), Alphabet Book (1938), Story-Teller Poems (1948), Here Comes Christmas: A Book of Christmas Poems for Youngsters (1962), and  The Day is Dancing and Other Poems (1968).

Witch Cat

I want a little witch cat
With eyes all yellow-green.
Who rides upon a broomstick
Every Halloween.
Who purrs when she is taking off,
Just like a purring plane,
And doesn’t mind a tailspin
Even in the rain.

I was a cat who dares to light
The candle of the moon
And sets its jack-o’-lantern face
A-laughing like a loon.

I want a cat who laps the milk
Along the Milky Way,
A cat of spunk and character
As daring as the day;
But gentle-looking kittens
Are in the stores to sell
And which cat is a witch cat,

I really cannot tell.

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