One day I came home to a spider that looked like one of the horn-shelled villains in Super Mario Brothers building a web between the strings of white lights suspended above our deck, directly in our path on and off the deck, in and out of our house, to and from our cars. For a second I convinced myself we would not only be willing to but would also be able to remember to duck under it for as long as the spider wanted to live there, but I knew it wasn't true. The web wouldn't last beyond my afternoon walk with the dogs, when I'd likely forget to duck under it, destroying an entire afternoon's work, turning it into a messy inconvenience on my face and in my hair. I felt terribly guilty razing her work thus far by relocating her, but worse would be to let her invest all her time and energy when I knew it was for naught. For a second or two, I watched her delicately and deftly designing her web, her legs quickly weaving and sewing. And then I picked up a brown pine needle and gently removed her from her project, a bit of it coming with her. I placed her and a portion of her web on the back fence by the forsythias. For a moment she scurried from one end to the other of what little web had made the trip. How disoriented she must have felt. Later, I glanced from my chair by the fire pit to the fence. Between several posts, gossamer strings of web glistened and swayed--her pathway, I suppose, to a new start.
Amanda Sue Creasey is a dog-loving aspiring novelist who teaches high school English. Find her online at amandasuecreasey.com.