Culture and Words…


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!

~Margaret Widdemer

(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.

Happy spring!


About chickadee1220

My name is Mara. I am Minnesota born and raised. Four seasons, forests, farms, and 10,000 lakes have given me a deep appreciation for nature. Photography helps me to share this love with others. And, once in awhile, I find myself interested in sociology. Go figure.

3 Responses

  1. They are beautiful and I’m glad that you wrote about them. This morning I noticed very similar little catkins on my neighbor’s aspen trees — another member of the willow family!


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