Lines

landscape with wires

Just as I’m about to take a freight train up my nose,
I stop with my head halfway to the rails:
a spider is swimming past my face,
like Rapunzel descending a single strand of her own hair.
Her hindmost pair of legs pays out the line,
the next two legs stick straight out for balance
& the two pairs of forelegs move in circles,
feeling all around for an anchor point.
Not here, I say, nudging her silk wake
to keep her off the mirror-tray
& its two parallel lines of white powder.
She reverses course like a yo-yo, heading for my finger.
I push the thread a little farther & she severs
her connection. Sorry, sister, I mutter
as she drops to the floor — a chaos of newspapers —
touching down without incident among the headlines.

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Dave Bonta (bio) crowd-sources his problems by following his gut, which he shares with 100 trillion of his closest microbial friends — a close-knit, symbiotic community comprising several thousand species of bacteria, fungi, and protozoa. In a similarly collaborative fashion, all of Dave’s writing is available for reuse and creative remix under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License. For attribution in printed material, his name (Dave Bonta) will suffice, but for web use, please link back to the original. Contact him for permission to waive the “share alike” provision (e.g. for use in a conventionally copyrighted work).

7 Comments


  1. Interesting, surprising voice. I think hopping that freight train often enough makes the life of spiders less noticeable.

    Reply

  2. Interesting plays on connections and disconnections, balance and loss of balance, not to mention sense
    of
    space
    .

    Reply

  3. Thanks for the comments.

    I think hopping that freight train often enough makes the life of spiders less noticeable.

    Yeah, that was one of my guiding assumptions here. But you never know when something in nature is going to grab somebody all of a sudden. To me, this is a hopeful poem.

    not to mention sense
    of
    space
    .

    My working title for the piece had been “Descent,” and it was arranged in a long column of short lines. I’m glad that sense of space was still evident to you.

    Reply

  4. I like the edginess of this. The chaos of headlines these days could make anyone ready to take a freight train up the nose. Glad they didn’t hurt the spider though.

    Reply

  5. A very elegant pairing of Anansi & the Devil’s dandruff!

    Reply

  6. The chaos of headlines these days could make anyone ready to take a freight train up the nose.

    I dunno. Wouldn’t be my drug of choice, but then people have different responses. If one suffered from a general sense of helplessness, perhaps the ego rush of cocaine would be just the thing.

    Thanks, Dick. I forgot about Anansi – good point.

    Reply

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