In what was once a monastery,
A darkened archway
hides from eyes the sideways path
possibility for those who dare
and there is the cat
whisker halo as it bathes
in the blink of sunlight
that slips through the door
Painting the wall, the flagstones on the ground
Printing them with morning
and there is the cat
safe and black and purring
shadow imprinted on the wall
assured of an existence
right Here right Now
by the dark, the shape that is left
where it soaks up the sun
leaving paved stones under shadow
After a Derek Langley photograph
There is a cobweb in the corner. A small green spider scuttles over the outermost threads and is pounced on, devoured, by a pair of thick hairy legs. Not devoured, sucked. Poisoned. Left for later. You don’t see many little green spiders.
This little green spider had a family, fifteen brothers and twenty-six sisters. Just like in the story books, except these spiders didn’t wear little bonnets and aprons because that would just look stupid. They actually led a very straightforward spiderly life and strung webs out in the evening and ate midges and occasionally one another. They had no qualms about cannibalism because blood always tastes better if it is not your own. These little green spiders had plenty of blood.
Just before this particular little green spider met his demise he had been knitting a pair of socks. Not because he wanted to wear the socks, but because he was experimenting with his identity. Someone had once told him that knitting was the path to true enlightenment, and being the open-minded little green spider that he was, he decided to give it a try. One sock was larger than the others. He used to wear it as a balaclava. This impaired his vision somewhat, and hence he failed to see the trip threads or the two thick and hairy legs, which were attached to two very lethal fangs, until it was too late.
This little green spider always tried to take an upbeat view of life. Hence, he experienced the tingling burn of the venom with a detached fascination. ‘How interesting,’ he thought. ‘I wonder what is going on?’ Then his legs fell off and with them his socks he had worked so hard to produce and the little green spider felt a pang of sorrow for all the effort he had invested in producing such fine footwear.
This development did, however, give the little green spider a moment to contemplate his existence without his legs and socks and other associated baggage. At this moment he happened to notice the dust on the window and the way the individual grains kaleideskoped themselves together and as this was the last thing the little green spider ever saw, he invested huge significance in the one blue spot of grime amongst the brown-red dust.