femme et chatte

A Woman and Her Cat

english translation

A Woman and Her Cat

original French poem

Femme et chatte

Elle jouait avec sa chatte;
Et c’était merveille de voir
La main blanche et la blanche patte
S’ébattre dans l’ombre du soir.

Elle cachait—la scélérate!—
Sous ces mitaines de fil noir
Ses meurtriers ongles d’agate,
Coupants et clairs comme un rasoir.

L’autre aussi faisait la sucrée,
Et rentrait sa griffe acérée,
Mais le diable n’y perdait rien. . .

Et dans le boudoir où, sonore,
Tintait son rire aérien,
Brillaient quatre points de phosphore.


Paul Verlaine

Paul Verlaine (1844 – 1896), precursor of the Symbolists, composed ten volumes of lushly musical poetry replete with eroticism and subtle moods. His life was a tempestuous sequence of prosperity, poverty, Parisian café society, a violent affair with the young Rimbaud, two imprisonments for assault—including one on his mother—as well as failed business ventures and intervals of teaching in England.



Diane Furtney

After her Tulsa upbringing and with a psychology degree from Vassar College, Diane Furtney worked a year in Israel (1967), then took an assortment of jobs, sometimes in clinical psychology, in several U.S. cities. Besides nonfiction ghostwriting, she has authored two prize-winning poetry chapbooks (Destination Rooms and It Was a Game) and two comic mystery novels (pseudonym D.J.H. Jones). Her poems and translations (French, Japanese) are in numerous journals in the U.S.


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