Death of a Spider


There, silhouetted between the gossamer curtain
and the window, i saw it:
the perfect silhouette of a fat, healthy spider.

the shape looked like
a black widow (sort of)—
stocky and fat enough. Well fed.

I moved the curtain up a bit
(though it was held top and bottom by rods attached to the windowsill
of my back porch door)
and he moved a bit in a jerky sort of way, the way spiders do.
Just imperceptibly up.

At the same time, I was removing my slipper
(sheepskin, with the fleece starting to wear)
ever so smoothly but with conviction…

He was now clearly outlined between
the pane and the curtain; nowhere to go.
“Whap!” he didn’t seem hit.
“Whap!” again, and this time,
the light shone through
the browns and blacks
of his corrupted body;
a stain on the white curtain.

I carefully removed the top rod, then the bottom,
freeing the curtain
without letting the liquefied mass
touch my clothing

and put the two pieces of the curtain in a bucket
with detergent and water
to soak.

The stain will come out; the fabric is nylon.

Why am i such a murderer?

off the wall

the wall


i’ve been thinking about
the expression
‘off the wall’—
what does it really mean?
like so many expressions
people say it without thinking
to mean ‘different’ or

but looking closely at the image
it paints
does it mean,
like a picture,
that has floated, frame and all,
off the wall?

or is it more like someone
a-straddle Hadrian’s (or another) wall
who has finally decided
which way to jump?

or is it like a waffle, syrup and all
that was thrown against the wall
and refuses to stick?

The Practice of Freedom

Food for thought …

“Education either functions as an instrument which is used to facilitate integration of the younger generation into the logic of the present system and bring about conformity or it becomes the practice of freedom, the means by which men and women deal critically and creatively with reality and discover how to participate in the transformation of their world.”
― Paulo Freire, Pedagogy of the Oppressed

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