Tag Archives: Pawprints in the Butter

Joy Cowley cats leave pawprints in the butter

Joy Cowley has written a terrific book of cat poems. All of the poems sound good and some of the poems tell stories. There are mean cats and cheeky cats and surprising cats. I rather like Jake who has such a long tail it looks like a broom. This book is in some libraries so you will be able to order it in if you are lucky.

The other splendiferous thing about this book is that all the gorgeous colour illustrations were done by children. Not just paint — but crayons and dye and felt pens and colour pencils were used.

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Joy has very kindly let me post ‘Apricot Cat’ (which is very fitting in the week we have her book Friends as a prize due to the lovely Gecko Press!). I love the way this poem sounds good when you say it aloud  — so good it almost becomes a song. And then – it is also a poem with a little twist. Joy shows that sometimes the very best poems can use quite simple words to tell a story. The extra special ingredient in this poem is … repetition. Listen to the way some lines echo and change through the poem. Try reading aloud in class with different groups taking different lines so the classroom fills with a delicious, echoey apricot cat!

Apricot Cat

The apricot cat said to the mouse,

‘Mousie, I do love you!

Come with me to my beautiful house

With its table set for two.

And you will hear me sing:

Mousie dear, Mousie dear,

You’re the sweetest thing.’

The mouse said, ‘No!’ to the apricot cat.

‘I will not go with you!’

One place at your table is set for cat,

The other for mousie stew.

And I would hear you sing:

Mousie stew, Mousie stew.

You’re the sweetest thing.’

© Joy Cowley with friends (the children illustrators!) Pawprints in the Butter: A Collection of Cats Mallinson Rendel 1991