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The classic poem for this issue of The Fairfield Review features a piece written by one of the most notable American essayists, E.B. White. Natural History was originally written as a letter to his wife, while he was in Toronto. At E.B White's memorial service, copies of this poem with a picture of him swinging on an old tire wing outside the barn where he wrote were distributed to mourners. --egh

Natural History
(A Letter to Katherine from the King Edward Hotel, Toronto)
By E.B. White

The spider, dropping down from twig,
Unwinds a thread of her devising:
A thin, premeditated rig
To use in rising.

And all the journey down through space,
In cool descent, and loyal-hearted,
She builds a ladder to the place
From which she started.

Thus I, gone forth, as spiders do,
In spider's web a truth discerning,
Attach one silken strand to you
For my returning.




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Document last modified on: 02/10/1998

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