The Fisher Child

This is a rewritten version of a poem from my early writing days, in response to a prompt at Miz Quickly’s September challenge to write about fall.  This is probably not the kind of fall she intended, but it is a true story!

The Fisher Child

A fluffy kitten grew rapidly
into a great big Ginger Tom,
voracious for females,
rapacious for fish.
Food was hard to come by then,
just after world war two,
so the child that was me
was set to become
fishwinner to the family.

Each morning, whatever the weather,
crouched over rod at the end of the garden,
float a-bobbing in murky green Thames,
watched avidly by crouching cat,
ready to pounce on anything that wiggled
as it flew through the air to land by his nose.
Quick! Take out the hook as quick as a flash.
Cat will only eat if the fish is not dead.

One winter morning dull and drear
the fragile line had ruptured.
Balance fractured, I fell backward
into cold green water
in smart school clothes
with brand new coat.
I was anything but popular.

The cat didn’t care once he had his fish,
to him nothing else mattered.
Her own little drama as hunter played out,
the child had no thanks from that cat.


All poetry, prose and pictures posted here, except where otherwise stated, is my own, and may only be used elsewhere with my expressed permission. Please don't be inhibited from correcting my bloopers and making suggestions: Most of what I post here is instant, ill-considered and off-the-cuff, in serious need of editing.
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22 Responses to The Fisher Child

  1. ayala says:

    Love your story, it made me smile.


  2. kelly says:

    this made me smile… i am a certified cray cat lady… they aren’t very good about appreciating everything we do for them, but i think perhaps that is part of their intrigue. love your story!


  3. Susan says:

    Quite a responsibility for a little child–and also great fun to be independent and trusted. Enter the stalker/rival for the fish and i’s almost a Peter and the Wolf story that could be put to music. I couldn’t help myself, I grinned. But, O, I know poverty and the need for that beautiful coat! Tragic.


  4. ayala says:

    Great storytelling!


  5. Steve Shultz says:

    Wonderful storytelling.


  6. Raven Spirit says:

    I think to myself tis morning. Lucky cat! Unlucky Viv!


  7. kaykuala says:

    What a fun take Viv! Yes, it lived for itself and had the landed fish all for itself. Must be pretty cold in the winter morning



  8. Mary says:

    I love this childhood tale, Viv. I can only imagine your parents’ annoyance when you came home with your new coat drenched….


  9. Cats! Love to be served and this one was probably smug at its luck at the cost of the new school clothes.


  10. wolfsrosebud says:

    what a great woven story here… what a naughty little cat


  11. brian miller says:

    smiles…we have a tom…and he loves to eat…he does not always, but most times he gives snuggles for food…but there are def times as well where our sacrifice is overlooked in his needs…smiles..


  12. I know it isn’t fun falling in–but this made me smile from ear to ear–for the little girl, for the cat and for the determination of both


  13. You have captured the mentality of the cat so aptly.. a sacrifice is only measured in amount of fish it gets… I think this can be used as a social metaphor… but it’s late, and maybe I’m interpreting too much into the tale that have great value in itself.


  14. Love this metaphor and your vivid images – sacrifice is frequently not appreciated and love is not always returned inner species or cross species. I have been watching Foyle’s War lately. What complete pictures it gives of the home front during and after WWII. As a child in the states, we didn’t know that same deprivation, but we knew the world was on hard times as the radio told us every 15 minutes and more at the top of the hour. I learned war and post war vocabulary from the radio and politics at the supper table. I knew Churchill and Roosevelt’s name long before I could recognize it in print. I had British grandmothers and many children then wanted to send care packages to children like you. My heart reached out to you again as I read this poem.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. i lived on the river Blackwater as a child and we fished with can poles with our cats..and this reflects that experience so true..


    I never fell back…

    Instead of grandmother told me..if you stick your finger in the alligator will bite it off..ah..the vivid imagery that is my mind..made this warning so true..

    that only my sister..who doesn’t see visual images in mind so well..but good with verbal ways of connecting and all of that..fished close to the rivers edge with all the cats..

    while i stepped back..and just watched the fish tale of all its scaled down glory..

    i never learned to fish..really..for fear of Alligator jaws…

    but i did learn to live…FREE WITHOUT fear…

    away from river front life…:)

    and Alligators 2..;)

    Liked by 1 person

  16. claudia says:

    oh heck… no fun to fall into the cold water with all the clothes on..but hey…even if the cat never said thanks i bet she WAS thankful…smiles


  17. granny1947 says:

    That is brilliant Viv!!!
    Funny, Tom would not touch raw fish.


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