Thursday, March 21, 2013

365 Jobs: Hairy Brown Spiders

 Adirondack Sketches: Sunday, Sept 3, 2000

Hairy Brown Spiders

Hairy brown spiders cling
trembling to the underside
of boards, then drop
to dark water
as we dismantle a dock.

My brawny son,
goofy-haired, so tall,
is distressed,
refusing to rip nails
until he observes:
these spiders can swim!

Good boy.

Note: I don't normally feel a need to fact-check a poem, but in this case I did and here's what I learned:  They're called Dock Spiders, genus Dolomedes.  They are nocturnal.  They walk on water.  They eat insects and even small fish.  They can go underwater, breathing air captured as bubbles on their hairy bodies.  Cool critters.
Here's a photo from Wikipedia:

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