The Spider and the Ghost of the Fly by Vachel Lindsay

Once I loved a spider

When I was born a fly,

A velvet-footed spider

With a gown of rainbow-dye.

She ate my wings and gloated.

She bound me with a hair.

She drove me to her parlor

Above her winding stair.

To educate young spiders

She took me all apart.

My ghost came back to haunt her.

I saw her eat my heart


Considered one of the first modern performance poets, Vachel Lindsay was born in Springfield, IL in 1879 and died there in 1931, having spent much of his career traveling the country performing his works.

He is credited with reviving poetry’s oral traditions in the early 20th century with his “singing poetry”. He was a friend and mentor to many fellow poets of the time, including fellow Midwestern poets Sara Teasdale and Langston Hughes.

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