Reub's journey

12 October 2010

Spider webs

John has left for a week in Washington DC, and after that, off for his second trip this year to Sarajevo in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Trees have become a very important topic on our planet, and John is good at what he does, a mix of anthropology and forestry.

So from time to time, I must share him.

Before he left on his long trip we took a walk together, we two old friends, with our two dogs in the morning mist that is so beautiful when the sun first begins to filter through.

Even the most common grasses and weeds were dressed with droplets of sparkling dew.

But the most remarkable of all were the spider webs. The mist and dew made them stand out, elegant and perfect.

Even down on the ground there were webs of various design. The maker of this one managed to get herself photographed.

Spiders are magical creatures who seem to create beauty and order out of chaotic surroundings.

Usually they are nearly invisible.

But in the morning mist their glistening webs give them away.

To be wrapped in gossamer: what better ending for the spent blooms of a hawthorn bush?

E.B. White, author of the incomparable Charlotte's Web, published the following poem anonymously in 1929. It was a love poem for his wife.

Natural History

The spider, dropping down from twig,
Unfolds a plan of her devising,
A thin premeditated rig
To use in rising.
And all that journey down through space,
In cool descent and loyal hearted,
She spins a ladder to the place
From where she started.
Thus I, gone forth as spiders do
In spider's web a truth discerning,
Attach one silken thread to you
For my returning.


  1. I'm not too partial to spiders but these are some really artful webs. They definitely are incredible.

  2. What a lovely post. Makes me feel less creepy about continually walking into spider webs this time of year. Best wishes for a safe and successful trip for your guy.

  3. Oh dear. How long will he be gone?

    What a beautiful walk you took together, wow.

  4. JarieLyn, spiders get such a bad rap. They are nowhere near as scary as one might think. And the webs are sheer magic.
    Tabor, I don't actually love walking into those webs either, even if I do think they are magical.
    Reya, he will be back in about 2 weeks from now. Long enough!

  5. oh i love the glistening elegant. and EB White - what a great poem! we listened to him read Charlotte's Web, which is a TREAT.


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