“A bite of a laugh” by Alex Phelan

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A bite of a laugh…


On the patio last Thursday

l was cleaning the dust away

the chairs hadn’t been wiped for ages

and for this neglect I would pay.


My satisfied duster flicked over

each heavily soiled chair 

as cobwebs flew like magic 

through the warm and humid air.


A sudden sensation – a tickle

a panic at ankle height

a tiny black menacing spider 

had had more than its size in fright.


It wasn’t too happy about this

in fact it was mighty mad

so with lightning force it bit me

then hid in the nearest plant.


Who’d imagine a tiny black spider 

could inflict such searing pain

I fell to the patio tiles


never to dust again.


The pain in the ankle grew sharper 

the skin turned light pink and then red

The doc she prescribed penicillin, 

 intoned in a voice that I dread,

“You will need to take fourteen days of it

or you just might end up 

quite dead.

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