1 For I will consider my Cat Jeoffry. 2 For he is the servant of the Living God duly and daily serving him. 3 For at the first glance of the glory of God in the East he worships in his way. 4 For this is done by wreathing his body seven times round with elegant quickness. 5 For then he leaps up to catch the musk, which is the blessing of God upon his prayer. 6 For he rolls upon prank to work it in.
7 For having done duty and received blessing he begins to consider himself. 8 For this he performs in ten degrees. 9 For first he looks upon his forepaws to see if they are clean. 10 For secondly he kicks up behind to clear away there. 11 For thirdly he works it upon stretch with the forepaws extended. 12 For fourthly he sharpens his paws by wood. 13 For fifthly he washes himself. 14 For sixthly he rolls upon wash. 15 For seventhly he fleas himself, that he may not be interrupted upon the beat. 16 For eighthly he rubs himself against a post. 17 For ninthly he looks up for his instructions. 18 For tenthly he goes in quest of food.
19 For having consider’d God and himself he will consider his neighbour. 20 For if he meets another cat he will kiss her in kindness. 21 For when he takes his prey he plays with it to give it a chance. 22 For one mouse in seven escapes by his dallying. 23 For when his day’s work is done his business more properly begins. 24 For he keeps the Lord’s watch in the night against the adversary. 25 For he counteracts the powers of darkness by his electrical skin and glaring eyes. 26 For he counteracts the Devil, who is death, by brisking about the life. 27 For in his morning orisons he loves the sun and the sun loves him.
28 For he is of the tribe of Tiger. 29 For the Cherub Cat is a term of the Angel Tiger. 30 For he has the subtlety and hissing of a serpent, which in goodness he suppresses. 31 For he will not do destruction, if he is well-fed, neither will he spit without provocation. 32 For he purrs in thankfulness, when God tells him he’s a good Cat. 33 For he is an instrument for the children to learn benevolence upon. 34 For every house is incomplete without him and a blessing is lacking in the spirit. 35 For the Lord commanded Moses concerning the cats at the departure of the Children of Israel from Egypt. 36 For every family had one cat at least in the bag. 37 For the English Cats are the best in Europe.
38 For he is the cleanest in the use of his forepaws of any quadruped. 39 For the dexterity of his defence is an instance of the love of God to him exceedingly. 40 For he is the quickest to his mark of any creature. 41 For he is tenacious of his point. 42 For he is a mixture of gravity and waggery. 43 For he knows that God is his Saviour. 44 For there is nothing sweeter than his peace when at rest. 45 For there is nothing brisker than his life when in motion. 46 For he is of the Lord’s poor and so indeed is he called by benevolence perpetually–Poor Jeoffry! poor Jeoffry! the rat has bit thy throat. 47 For I bless the name of the Lord Jesus that Jeoffry is better.
48 For the divine spirit comes about his body to sustain it in complete cat. 49 For his tongue is exceeding pure so that it has in purity what it wants in music. 50 For he is docile and can learn certain things. 51 For he can set up with gravity which is patience upon approbation. 52 For he can fetch and carry, which is patience in employment. 53 For he can jump over a stick which is patience upon proof positive. 54 For he can spraggle upon waggle at the word of command. 55 For he can jump from an eminence into his master’s bosom. 56 For he can catch the cork and toss it again.
57 For he is hated by the hypocrite and miser. 58 For the former is afraid of detection. 59 For the latter refuses the charge. 60 For he camels his back to bear the first notion of business. 61 For he is good to think on, if a man would express himself neatly. 62 For he made a great figure in Egypt for his signal services. 63 For he killed the Ichneumon-rat very pernicious by land.
64 For his ears are so acute that they sting again. 65 For from this proceeds the passing quickness of his attention. 66 For by stroking of him I have found out electricity. 67 For I perceived God’s light about him both wax and fire. 68 For the Electrical fire is the spiritual substance, which God sends from heaven to sustain the bodies both of man and beast. 69 For God has blessed him in the variety of his movements. 70 For, tho he cannot fly, he is an excellent clamberer. 71 For his motions upon the face of the earth are more than any other quadruped. 72 For he can tread to all the measures upon the music. 73 For he can swim for life. 74 For he can creep.
A POET'S cat, sedate and grave, As poet well could wish to have, Was much addicted to inquire For nooks, to which she might retire, And where, secure as mouse in chink, She might repose, or sit and think. I know not where she caught the trick— Nature perhaps herself had cast her In such a mould PHILOSOPHIQUE, Or else she learn’d it of her master. Sometimes ascending, debonair, An apple-tree or lofty pear, Lodg’d with convenience in the fork, She watched the gard'ner at his work; Sometimes her ease and solace sought In an old empty wat'ring-pot, There, wanting nothing, save a fan, To seem some nymph in her sedan, Apparell’d in exactest sort, And ready to be borne to court. But love of change it seems has place Not only in our wiser race; Cats also feel as well as we That passion’s force, and so did she. Her climbing, she began to find, Expos’d her too much to the wind, And the old utensil of tin Was cold and comfortless within: She therefore wish’d instead of those, Some place of more serene repose, Where neither cold might come, nor air Too rudely wanton with her hair, And sought it in the likeliest mode Within her master’s snug abode. A draw'r,—it chanc’d, at bottom lin’d With linen of the softest kind, With such as merchants introduce From India, for the ladies’ use,— A draw'r impending o'er the rest, Half open in the topmost chest, Of depth enough, and none to spare, Invited her to slumber there. Puss with delight beyond expression Survey’d the scene, and took possession. Recumbent at her ease ere long, And lull’d by her own hum-drum song, She left the cares of life behind, And slept as she would sleep her last, When in came, housewifely inclin’d, The chambermaid, and shut it fast, By no malignity impell’d, But all unconscious whom it held. Awaken’d by the shock (cried puss) Was ever cat attended thus! The open draw'r was left, I see, Merely to prove a nest for me, For soon as I was well compos’d, Then came the maid, and it was closed: How smooth these ‘kerchiefs, and how sweet, O what a delicate retreat! I will resign myself to rest Till Sol, declining in the west, Shall call to supper; when, no doubt, Susan will come and let me out. The evening came, the sun descended, And puss remain’d still unattended. The night roll’d tardily away, (With her indeed 'twas never day) The sprightly morn her course renew’d, The evening gray again ensued, And puss came into mind no more Than if entomb’d the day before. With hunger pinch’d, and pinch’d for room, She now presag’d approaching doom, Nor slept a single wink, or purr’d, Conscious of jeopardy incurr’d. That night, by chance, the poet watching, Heard an inexplicable scratching, His noble heart went pit-a-pat, And to himself he said—what’s that? He drew the curtain at his side, And forth he peep’d, but nothing spied. Yet, by his ear directed, guess’d Something imprison’d in the chest, And doubtful what, with prudent care, Resolv’d it should continue there. At length a voice, which well he knew, A long and melancholy mew, Saluting his poetic ears, Consol’d him, and dispell’d his fears; He left his bed, he trod the floor, He 'gan in haste the draw'rs explore, The lowest first, and without stop, The rest in order to the top. For 'tis a truth well known to most, That whatsoever thing is lost, We seek it, ere it come to light, In ev'ry cranny but the right. Forth skipp’d the cat; not now replete As erst with airy self-conceit, Nor in her own fond apprehension A theme for all the world’s attention, But modest, sober, cur’d of all Her notions hyperbolical, And wishing for a place of rest Any thing rather than a chest: Then stept the poet into bed, With this reflection in his head:
MORAL Beware of too sublime a sense Of your own worth and consequence! The man who dreams himself so great, And his importance of such weight, That all around, in all that’s done, Must move and act for him alone, Will learn in school of tribulation, The folly of his expectation.