The Willow Cats
They call them pussy-willows,
But there’s no cat to see
Except the little furry toes
That stick out on the tree:
I think that very long ago,
When I was just born new,
There must have been whole pussy-cats
Where just the toes stick through–
And every Spring it worries me,
I cannot ever find
Those willow-cats that ran away
And left their toes behind!
(published in 1928)
The pussy willow plant is a fond memory from my childhood that I have always associated with Easter and spring. I’m so disappointed that modern day language has turned this lovely plant into something to giggle about when mentioned. So, I’m going to take a risk and celebrate this sweet little poem and plant regardless of any snickering.