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Thursday, July 05, 2018

Poetry Friday--Spiders!

Yesterday's post contained a fascinating video about flying spiders! If you missed it, click here.

Spiders, are not exactly cute and cuddly, and thus, many people tend to avoid them at all costs. One piece of advice, though, let them live! They're an important part of the ecosystem--including within your home environment!

I got to thinking about spider poems and my mind immediately went to, "come into my parlor, said the spider to the fly." It turns out that I have mis-remembered it. The line goes, "Will you walk into my parlour? said the spider to the fly." It is from "The Spider and the Fly" by Mary Howitt, which was first published in 1829.

Contrary to what I would have expected, there are many poems about spiders. From three line haiku to others, like "The Spider and the Fly," which is 7 stanzas long (44 lines).

Here's a sample haiku from Japanese poet, Issa, translated by Robert Hass:
Don’t worry, spiders,
I keep house
    casually.


From The Essential Haiku: Versions of Basho, Buson, and Issa. [895.6 ESS]

A spider's skill in web-building provides a great subject for illustrators, too! Here are two examples from our collection. The first is from a book by Betsy Franco titled Bees, Snails, & Peacock Tails: Patterns & Shapes...Naturally, illustrated by Steve Jenkins [811.54 FRA].




The second is from an anthology, The Beauty of the Beast: Poems from the Animal Kingdom selected by Jack Prelutsky, and illustrated by Meilo So.




The Poetry Friday Round-Up is being held at The Miss Rumphius Effect, hosted by Tricia.

10 comments:

  1. I had to laugh at Issa's haiku. We have a spider who keeps making a web outside our door. I got a faceful of web the other day and I didn't really feel like living peacefully together after that...but it seems a lot more determined than I am.

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    1. It's trying to save you from nasty mosquitoes--be kind! ;-)

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  2. We usually let spiders live. I've written a couple of spider poems myself--one is a mask poem and the other is a "things to do" poem. One of my favorites is Douglas Florian's "The Daddy Longlegs"--a poem of address--from his book INSECTLOPEDIA. My elementary students LOVED that poem--and the book.

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    1. We have Insectlopedia [J 811 FLO]! I'll have to dig it out again!

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  3. Replies
    1. Issa was a friend to all the little creatures.

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  4. Diane, you have quite a collection of spider poetry. If I wasn't bitten by those critters hiding under my office desk and the bees that stung me, I might want to laugh at the DaddyLongLegs poem.

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    1. Sadly, the scanner cut off the end of that poem, too!

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  5. Okay, you know you're on to something when you can make even spiders seem friendly! I'm not a fan, but I can relate to Issa's haiku.

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  6. Thanks for this fun collection of spider poems Diane–what a squiggly treat! I must be part spider, cause "I keep house casually" too

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