For the third day in a row as I sit hunched over a notebook, a little brown spider, not of the poisonous kind, scampers across my desk. Skittering around the edge of my monitor, it huddles briefly in the lower right hand corner, perhaps warming its little toes, then dashes up and across my screen, over the backside, and down again to my desk. With no pause for rest, it explores a small statue of the Tibetan goddess Red Tara (the loving mother who watches over me), a slightly larger bronze statue of a young girl on a pony (a treasured gift from my husband years ago) and a hunk of white coral gathered from the floor of the Pacific ocean on a skin diving expedition to Hawaii when I was nineteen. The little speedster bypasses the two owl feathers wedged into the top of the coral, perhaps picking up the faint predatory scent.
It then disappears behind a stack of books waiting to be added to Bookreads and I wonder where it will pop up next. I worry it will scoot between the folders piled at my elbow and I will accidentally squish it.
I wonder about the presence of this little weaver. Native Americans believe Spider weaves the dream of the world. Her body, shaped like the number eight, is a symbol for “the infinite possibilities of creation” (Medicine Cards, Jamie Sams, 1988). He also says “If Spider has dropped from her web into your cards today (or onto your desk as you write!) she may be telling you to create, create, create.”
These are strong inspiring words for a fiction writer who must face the limitless possibilities of a blank page again and again. What worlds wait to be created today?
As I wrote the words describing the spider’s shape, the little brown creature came prancing across my paper and stopped once in the middle of a sentence as though to be sure I got it right. It must have approved because it moved on to the Medicine Cards book lying open beside me, the name and picture of spider prominently displayed on the page. It explored the book thoroughly then moved on as I began to write.
The arachnophobes among you may be a bit queasy right now. But to me it’s an exciting and promising sign. It’s late October you see, the season of Samhain, a thin time when the veils between worlds are delicate and easily torn. Like spider’s webs.
I expect visitors.