We here at P&PC love John Keats's poem "To Mrs. Reynolds's Cat":
Cat! who hast passed thy grand climacteric,
How many mice and rats hast in thy days
Destroyed? How many tit-bits stolen? Gaze
With those bright languid segments green, and prick
Those velvet ears - but prithee do not stick
Thy latent talons in me, and up-raise
Thy gentle mew, and tell me all thy frays
Of fish and mice, and rats and tender chick.
Nay, look not down, nor lick thy dainty wrists -
For all thy wheezy asthma, and for all
Thy tail's tip is nicked off, and though the fists
Of many a maid have given thee many a maul,
Still is that fur as soft as when the lists
In youth thou enteredst on glass-bottled wall.
Invictus"—and not just because it's got sixteen lines of iambic tetrameter just like "Invictus" does, but also because those first six lines appear to be reworking the language of Henley's poem. The famous last lines of "Invictus"—
It matters not how straight the gate,—become the lines "The master of my destiny" and "Oh, what unhappy twist of fate" in Witham's poem. Witham even recycles Henley's "straight gate" and turns it into "my gate." Here, then, is the opening of "Stray Cat":
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate,
I am the captain of my soul.
Oh, what unhappy twist of fate
Has brought you, homeless to my gate?
The gate where once another stood
To beg for shelter, warmth and food.
For from that day I ceased to be
The master of my destiny.