Mae's Real Stories

Memories for Miriam, Alice, Theo, Delia, Tessa and anyone else who would like to be here

Saturday, June 28, 2008


Pogo the Possum

"Pogo the Possum" was a cartoon in the daily newspaper that I read when I was a girl. It appeared in the paper named The St.Louis Post Dispatch. Another time, I wrote about the funnies in the Post here: "Dibs on the funny paper".

Pogo was a funny little guy, who lived with his friends, other talking animals, in the Okeefenokee Swamp. Walt Kelly, the cartoonist, drew one 4-panel cartoon every day. The story continued from day to day. Nowadays, you can read cartoons like this in newspapers or online.

One of the characters in the cartoon was named Snavely Snake. He wore a hat, as you can see in the picture. So did many of the other characters, and in fact, back then, many men wore hats every day.

One day there was a letter in the newspaper. It asked readers a question: how does Snavely Snake get his hat on without having any hands. Your answers could be sent to the newspaper. I tried an answer. I think I said that Snavely dug a hole under his hat, and came up underneath to get it onto his head.

A few weeks later, Walt Kelly himself sent me an autographed copy of the Pogo book named Positively Pogo to thank me for trying to answer the question. A little note also appeared in the newspaper. I think he preferred a different answer: that Snavely tossed his hat up with his tail, and caught it on his head. Anyway, here's the autograph and the cover of the book:

Addendum/scholarship on Pogo:
"Probably the most famous Pogo quotation is "we have met the enemy and he is us." More than any other words written by Kelly, it perfectly sums up his attitude towards the foibles of mankind and the nature of the human condition."
For a complete run down on this and other things Pogo see:
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