BOOKS: A Cat

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, April 1996:

A Cat, by Leonard Michaels,
illustrated by Frances Lerner
Riverhead Books
(200 Madison Ave., New York, NY
10016), 1995. $14.95

Michaels’ book is like poetry, and
the illustrations are reminiscent of Japanese
brush painting. There is deft economy, an
aptness to both Michaels’ observations and
the fluid strokes adorning the pages.


Michaels tells us, “A cat is beautiful, and no
cat is far more appealing than most. Cole
Porter wouldn’t have written, ‘Though your
face is charming, it’s the wrong face’ about a
cat.
On another page, Michaels reminds
us, “Much that is meaningful between you
and a cat transpires in silence. It isn’t different
between people.”
Some of his more controversial
observations refine my own perceptions of
what had seemed commonplace. There are
things to ponder, things to question, things
to quote.
––Phyllis Clifton

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