Basil Ransome-Davies : La Divina

Musical taste divides our house.
I favour country, but my spouse
Has one strong preference, and that's
Maria Callas strangling cats.

I picture the immortal diva
Gripped by ailurophobic fever,
Straining to hit that perfect note,
Her hands around a kitten's throat.

Apparently she'd make a beeline
For any hapless passing feline
And emulate its tortured wails
While practising her daily scales.

She'd use tight collars, the garotte,
Her brassière, a hangman's knot
Or any handy apparatus
To squeeze a howl from Felis catus .

Astringent as a scorpion's telson,
My wife belittles Willie Nelson;
But there's a man who'd pet and stroke
The cats that Callas loved to choke.