“Cat’s Dream” by Pablo Neruda

How neatly a cat sleeps,
sleeps with its paws and its posture,
sleeps with its wicked claws,
and with its unfeeling blood,
sleeps with all the rings
a series of burnt circles–
which have formed the odd geology
of its sand-colored tail.

I should like to sleep like a cat,
with all the fur of time,
with a tongue rough as flint,
with the dry sex of fire;
and after speaking to no one,
stretch myself over the world,
over roofs and landscapes,
with a passionate desire
to hunt the rats in my dreams.

I have seen how the cat asleep
would undulate, how the night
flowed through it like dark water;
and at times, it was going to fall
or possibly plunge into
the bare deserted snowdrifts.
Sometimes it grew so much in sleep
like a tiger’s great-grandfather,
and would leap in the darkness over
rooftops, clouds and volcanoes.

Sleep, sleep cat of the night,
with episcopal ceremony
and your stone-carved moustache.
Take care of all our dreams;
control the obscurity
of our slumbering prowess
with your relentless heart
and the great ruff of your tail.

Pablo Neruda

Photo of my cat “Chet Baker” by L.K. Thayer

© 2011

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3 comments

  1. Alexis Rhone Fancher · September 30, 2011

    Awwwww……… Chet Baker!!

  2. nicole · September 30, 2011

    Bravo Pablo!

  3. Apryl Skies · September 30, 2011

    I really enjoyed this poem. A lovely writer I hope to see more of. Thank you for sharing
    “and after speaking to no one,
    stretch myself over the world,
    over roofs and landscapes,
    with a passionate desire
    to hunt the rats in my dreams.”

    Awesome I absolutely love these lines!

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