the spider factor

I mean – this was some special spider, right? / tap dancing round the bath last night / slick as a mini-beast Fred Astaire / smart black thorax & spiny hair / spats and spinneret / the fastest taps on the moth-in-a-basket circuit / I’m … puttin’ on my web hat, Tyin’ up my white flies, Brushin’ off my fangs / an old school song & dance man / well / normally, as you know, I cannot abide a / spider / but this one kinda had talent / so I put down the mallet / and gingerly scooped him up / with a letter from the IRS and a cup / (the spider was ashamed / but when I explained / and showed him the lovely box I’d made / that he could live in from day to day / with a tarantula-sized bed, a cup holder / an Xbox with eight controllers / he was one very interested beast / as far as I could tell, at least) / so I took him to my agent, Clyde Haughtim / who looked in the box to see what I’d brought him / and was just as overwhelmed as me / to see / a specimen of such artistry / But Jim – this is STUPENDOUS! said Clyde / slapping his sides / his flowery waistcoat straining / to contain him / Together we’ll CONQUER THE WORLD! he said / waving his finger over his head / in that irrepressible Haughtim-style / I’ve come to expect after knowing him a while / And y’know – he wasn’t wrong / Samson (as we decided his stage name should be / because it went with ‘spider’ alliteratively / and also rhymed with Handsome / although that was stretching it some) / anyway / what can I say? / Clyde was right / Samson smashed it on opening night / red carpets and laser lights / a giant mechanical version of the star performer / waggling his hairy legs over the foyer / (myself? I thought that was a little bit fey / but Clyde, as always, had the last say) / motorcycle cops, the TV press / screaming crowds, selfie requests / while inside the stage was set / with a monitor the size of the hadron collider / so everyone could see the dancing spider / the chorus giving it glamour & glitz / the orchestra fiddling away in the pits / then a sudden thunder of applause / enthusiastic roars / as Samson came tip-tapping down the stairs / with his cane and cape and diamante flares / but suddenly – disaster! / the stage manager was quick but the cat was faster / (you see – the theatre had a cat called Macavity / naturally / a creature well-known for its feline depravity) / Macavity sprang (is that the right tense? I’m not certain) / from its hiding place behind the curtain / flattened poor Samson with its two front paws / then snapped him down with depravitous jaws / the audience screamed / chaotic scenes / a vet ran through / to see what he could do / experienced in arachnids and exotic amphibia / but all he could find was half a tibia …

so now – whenever there’s a spider in the bath / that sings or dances or makes me laugh / I can’t be arsed to take it to Clyde / I just pick it up and sling it outside