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The Spider
by
Jane Taylor


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"Oh, look at that great ugly spider!" said Ann;
And screaming, she brush'd it away with her fan;
"'Tis a frightful black creature as ever can be,
I wish that it would not come crawling on me. "

"Indeed," said her mother, "I'll venture to say,
The poor thing will try to keep out of your way;
For after the fright, and the fall, and the pain,
It has much more occasion than you to complain.

"But why should you dread the poor insect, my dear?
If it hurt you, there'd be some excuse for your fear;
But its little black legs, as it hurried away,
Did but tickle your arm, as they went, I dare say.

"For them to fear us we must grant to be just,
Who in less than a moment can tread them to dust;
But certainly we have no cause for alarm;
For, were they to try, they could do us no harm.

"Now look! it has got to its home; do you see
What a delicate web it has spun in the tree?
Why here, my dear Ann, is a lesson for you:
Come learn from this spider what patience can do!

"And when at your business you're tempted to play,
Recollect what you see in this insect to-day,
Or else, to your shame, it may seem to be true,
That a poor little spider is wiser than you. " 

This poem is in the public domain.
 
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Jane Taylor (1783-1824) was a British poet primarily known for her children’s verse. She is the author of “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star,” arguably the world’s best know nursery rhyme. Born into a literary family, she wrote a broad body of work, though much of it remained unpublished while she was alive. Jane died of breast cancer at the age of forty.

 

 


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