It is more accurate to say that I was consumed by,

rather than saw, the pre-dawn work of countless arty spiders

spread as far as my senses could stretch without causing them

to rupture. I was, at the time, struggling to decide whether I had

finally freed myself of the novice’s need for a homebase for thoughts;

one from which collaborative mental exercises could, early morning,

begin and to which I would later return, still shining, just a little,

in the bone-dry light of my average day on the outside, contemplating

its pre-ordered events and their unravelling.


I was pursuing dreamy neons, derived from unplanned reunions,

throughout the day and night, of thoughts configured in my head,

finally to steal the scene; in short, to earn brighter lights for

the darker nights, both thoughts which formed crawling, exhausted,

into bed and those which somehow have found themselves close to

poetical alignment on a big issue – not just one you might wrap in

toilet tissue, place in a box, then forget all about it (like lots of people do,

perhaps in particular me and you).


But here, yet again, I am guilty on myriad counts of unlawfulness,

one being (for me) to turn cause and effect on their heads –

for example, to believe so strongly that anything can happen,

and make it happen, without corroboration or empirical research;

and such degree of conviction that all the things that support it

may be/must be simply taken as read.  Some would say that I am

suffering from a disconcerting degree of optimism; others might say

there goes another charlatan – and a witless one at that.


Anyway, the cause of it all was a sight before unseen:

in every direction, early gorse on Blackdown ridge,

yet to be yellowed over an early autumn, was head to toe 

adorned with gossamer threads spread masterfully in

all directions, each bush the canvas for a thousand webs,

each web an exquisite improvisation on the theme of

the beauty of flora already adored for its soft yellow glow,

now presaged by the deep green spines and leaves and

bejewelled by silver spray wielded by masterclass gods.


But the resulting layers of human joy and thankfulness,

laminated in and by me, were dashed by a confusion so strong

I failed to understand even the external phenomenon on display;

for no spider was to be seen either just finishing off or admiring its work;

and not one of all the possible prey of spiders of all persuasions,

despite a more than perfunctory examination, could be found

wrapped around with homespun ropes or otherwise distressed by

this monument to beauty, seemingly for its own sweet sake,

in this other-world design for some other place or time.


Yet there it was, in front of me, in all bearings away from me,

information for which I (and any other real-time watcher) could be

pilloried, and so I have hesitated in formulating any kind of coherent,

written rationale, let alone in evangelising armed with cut and dried

postulations and responses.  This being my first heady poets’ conundrum,

where else to start than the pages of an old notebook which has

cultured, over time, at least some success in taking raw, unpretty scribbles

and fashioning something from which some of us, somewhere may find

a chink of light. It’s what poets do: prepare the ground for things new.


And it’s good that I can proffer these present words as an

acknowledgement that there is more to be said, in walking/talking circles,

in relation to things that are just too hard to wrap up here and now

or before tomorrow morning or even the next. The narrative and text

on web sights remains introductory and there will be days when the words

glaze over, needing teamwork to clean and combine old, fading lines

and to search on the heaths, and in the forests and the fields, for the materials

even the poets require still to believe, to feel they surely are getting warmer;

and to tell us if the spiders were never there or were just around the corner.




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Candice Reineke

Fri 27th Sep 2019 18:21

Wonderfully descriptive! I fully appreciate the intricate details in this. Spider webs have always been so fascinating to me. Masterful craftsmanship goes into creating them, and yet, humans notice them most when accidentally walking into them or clearing them out of the way. Your spiders-to-poets comparison is beautiful!

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