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The Eight-legged Unicorn

It was a warm summer afternoon, when the trees were whispering their soft language, and their leaves were of a shining golden-green hue as the sun toyed through, between, over and around them. I,  wrapped within the spell of the noonday sun, dreamily entered into our bright, light-filled porch and collapsed into a chair to continue my studies. Yes, indeed, I was enslaved  by education upon that most glorious of days, but at least I could complete my assignments with the friendly sun beating down upon me. But I was very soon distracted from my labours. Glancing up from the tiresome papers, I beheld a small grey spider crawling on the arm of  my seat. I could see the two largest of its eight eyes appearing like shining beads, and peering more closely, I saw that the spider carried a pale cat hair upon its back with the tapered end stretching past and between those dark eyes. I can easily imagine how confused that little spider was, seeing that white, thin object protruding from above its head. The Zebra Spider lifted its front end up (I believe it was trying to snatch a better look at the foreign hair) then it spun around and around as if it thought it could shake it off. I believe I eventually removed the hair that was tormenting this little creature of the Lord’s, and off it leapt and disappeared from view.

Zebra Spider (Salticus scenicus): A dark grey spider with white bands, two prominent eyes among a total of eight, and a hairy body. Striking and very small, this arachnid is an excellent jumper, and leaves behind it a safety line of silk when it leaps. It is a harmless household insect except when abused.

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