The Owl and the Pussycat is the best nonsense poem of all time. Edward Lear’s nonsensical words gently undercut a sentimental story, balancing romance with frivolity, sense with nonsense, adventure with security, and the result is a story whose perfect meter and easy rhyme lull one to a state of blissful conviction that, yes, the world could be lovely if only it were full of owls and pussycats.
This posting is long overdue. Yet perhaps no time is the right time to pay homage to a man who births brilliance from sadness. Edward Lear, impoverished epileptic, clownish artist, misfit bumbling socialite, endearingly teary-eyed poet, and above all, a man whose name should ring out side by side with Lewis Carroll, but very rarely does.