Ripening they hang, mottled berries in Autumnal hues.
Their dew-beaded threads span brown twigs and evergreens, cross every path and doorway. Webs ping and snap under my outstretched hand, their pulpy occupants beating retreat on hooked feet. Some tangle stringy sticky in my hair, span my shoulders, eight legged passengers hitching a ride before their tickling makes me shoo them away.
One web in the front garden, butressed by fuschia and skeletal fennel, contains the biggest. The size of a grape, she bounces on her silky hammock, growing daily, warping the threads around her.
I wonder what happens when the spiderlings come. Does she pop, spread her feathery flesh for the young to feast on? Do they skitter free, leaving her shunk, wrinkled, from grape to raisin in the dash of their hair’s breadth legs?
It’s growing dark, street lights blinking on, sucking every colour but orange from the day and anyway, dinner calls.
I leave her to the speckled damp, the rocking breeze, her patient waiting.