THE LIT­ER­ARY LIFE The Time Is Now

Poets and Writers - - Contents -

Writ­ing prompts and ex­er­cises.

Here’s a strange ques­tion that might get some ideas flow­ing: Where do spi­ders and stars over­lap? Jump­ing spi­ders, whose eyes have tube­like struc­tures akin to Galileo’s te­le­scope, have reti­nas that can swivel so the arach­nids are able to look in dif­fer­ent di­rec­tions with­out mov­ing their heads. De­spite be­ing only a few mil­lime­ters long, the spi­ders have eyes that are ca­pa­ble of dis­cern­ing the moon, ac­cord­ing to cal­cu­la­tions by sci­en­tists. Use the no­tion of moon-gaz­ing spi­ders as a launch­pad for a poem that draws to­gether two un­likely ob­jects—a ce­les­tial body and an earthly body. You might also find in­spi­ra­tion in John Donne’s “The Flea” or Mar­i­lyn Nel­son’s “Crows,” which in­con­gru­ously pair the ex­am­i­na­tion of meta­phys­i­cal sub­ject mat­ter with a mun­dane phys­i­cal crea­ture.

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