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Double Cream: A Cat In School

...The next morning, I was at Mrs O ' Connor's house nice and early to catch the cat...

A sory told by a family friend, Lillian, about something which happened when she was a school girl in Liverpool inspired Robert Taylor to write the following poem.

I always sat at the back of the class room,
But I always tried to listen carefully to what my teacher told me to do.
One day, the teacher, Mrs. Lewis, asked us all to bring a cat into school.
I wasn't certain, but I think she said - cat! I thought, a cat would make an exciting lesson. We could draw it, describe it and all sorts. So, that night I told my mum.
'Mum! Mrs. Lewis wants us to take a cat into school tomorrow.'
'A cat? A cat! Why on earth would she want you to take a cat into school?
'I don't know,' I said. 'To draw -and things.'
'Ah, well. We haven't got a cat,' she said, 'So, you're out of luck there. Mind you, you could try next door. Mrs Connor's got four cats. Perhaps she'll let you borrow one of hers.'
So, I went next door to Mrs. O' Connor. I told her about needing a cat for school and she said.
'A cat? A cat! Why on earth would you want to take a cat into school?'
'I don't know.' I said. 'To draw and things.' She finally agreed to let me borrow one of her cats. But she said -
'I wouldn't take Henry. He scratches. And I wouldn't take Hilda, she bites. While Maisey can be bad tempered and spits.
If I was you, I'd take Jamie, he's friendly and good natured. Mind you, you'll have to catch him first. He is very - quick!'
The next morning, I was at Mrs O ' Connor's house nice and early to catch the cat.
Henry and Hilda were no where to be seen. Jamie, indeed, proved to be too fast to catch. He escaped down the garden, so we were left with the bad tempered, spitty one - called Maisey.
She was fast asleep in a chair.
'Oh well.' Mrs. O' Connor said, 'beggars can't be choosers, I suppose. Maisey it is.'
We got her into a basket and closed the door. I promised to look after her. I carried her all the way to school and she didn't wake up once.
Mind you, I was most surprised to find that I was the only one who had remembered to bring a cat.
Everyone else had brought a boring old - carrot instead!


Joyce Worsfold and Robert Taylor, the authors of Double Cream, are brother and sister and have spent most of their working lives teaching children in Yorkshire. They have written together since child-hood, producing poetry, stories, plays, musicals, song lyrics and monologues. Over 30 years they have performed their work for many audiences mostly in the North of England and Scotland, delighting thousands and bringing them both laughter and tears.

Joyce can be contacted for bookings at
telephone 01924 840 847

Robert can be contacted for bookings at
telephone 01830 520 344


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