Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Cats 'n Popes

Ok, so maybe, according to the new dispensation, dogs can go to heaven, maybe, by extension, horse flies, June bugs, hippos, pythons, tarantulas, lice, hermit crabs, and, for all I know, velociraptors. Who can tell? Who can plumb the mind of a Pope?

My question, though, is about cats. What's wrong with cats? Why can't they go to heaven? If there are no cats, what kind of heaven is it supposed to be, anyway? Full of varmints, I would think, flooded by mice, their droppings, by rats, plague and so on. Sound heavenly to you?

The College of Cardinals (more like a middle school, perhaps) might want to study  Christopher Smart (1722-1771) "On his cat Jeoffry", particularly the following:

I will consider my cat Jeoffry.
For he is the servant of the living God, duly and daily serving Him.
. . .
For when his day's work is done his business more properly begins.
For he keeps The Lord's watch in the night against the adversary.
For he counteracts the powers of darkness by his electrical skin and glaring eyes.
For he counteracts the devil, who is death, by brisking about the life.

. . .
For he purrs in thankfulness, when God tells him he's a good Cat.
. . .


For God has blessed him in the variety of his movements.
For tho he cannot fly, he is an excellent clamberer.

But Jeoffry, the hero of this ode, can clamber only so far, as per the latest Papal edict, and not so far as heaven.

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