About International Owl and Pussycat Day 12 May

Edward Lear bicentenary 2012 logo

12 May 2012 is Edward Lear’s 200th birthday, named International Owl and Pussycat Day in honour of the creator of one of the world’s most famous poems by Lear enthusiasts. 

The title was dreamed up by staff at Newquay Zoo http://newquayzoo.org.uk/events - we like his animal paintings, drawn in early British zoos like London Zoo and Knowsley Hall.

Events celebrating this can be found on the Blog Of Bosh http://nonsenselit.wordpress.com/ and the Edward Lear 1812-1888 on Facebook page.

Here’s the famous poem: how will you celebrate it?

I
The Owl and the Pussy-cat went to sea
    In a beautiful pea green boat,
They took some honey, and plenty of money,
    Wrapped up in a five pound note.
The Owl looked up to the stars above,
    And sang to a small guitar,
‘O lovely Pussy! O Pussy my love,
      What a beautiful Pussy you are,
          You are,
          You are!
What a beautiful Pussy you are!’ 
II
Pussy said to the Owl, ‘You elegant fowl!
    How charmingly sweet you sing!
O let us be married! too long we have tarried:
    But what shall we do for a ring?’
They sailed away, for a year and a day,
    To the land where the Bong-tree grows
And there in a wood a Piggy-wig stood
    With a ring at the end of his nose,
          His nose,
          His nose,
With a ring at the end of his nose. 

III
‘Dear pig, are you willing to sell for one shilling
    Your ring?’ Said the Piggy, ‘I will.’
So they took it away, and were married next day
    By the Turkey who lives on the hill.
They dined on mince, and slices of quince,
    Which they ate with a runcible spoon;
And hand in hand, on the edge of the sand,
    They danced by the light of the moon,
          The moon,
          The moon,
They danced by the light of the moon. 

For more information on Edward Lear, visit Mraco Graziosi’s website:  http://www.nonsenselit.org/Lear/learwk.html

2 responses to “About International Owl and Pussycat Day 12 May

  1. Lovely blog. I came across this in my peregrinations on the web. I too am a huge Edward Lear fan and posted some thoughts about him on my blog earlier. I shall be marking the day by dipping into some of his sublime stories and maybe see if I can perfect the “Owl and the Pussycat Dance”!

  2. This has always been one of my favorite poems to recite for children. Yes, I memorized it and repeat it whenever I’m around children or sometimes just to myself. Nonsense and imagination should be an integral part of every child’s life and should be nurturted on an everyday basis.

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