Carin Perron: Poems & Prose
The Spider
The Goddess of Ennui

This poem was written about a young woman with a large punk coif, consisting of long dyed-black hair done up in loose, curving spikes (looking like a spider on its back), who frequented "Divino," a downtown Calgary café. She usually sat in the table in the far back left corner, near the door to the parkade (this was before "Divino" was extended, and took over the next-door "Love Shop," a comment on the relative value to my fellow townsfolk of Chocolatissimo over Sex).

"The Spider," as I called her in my own mind, always wore tops that were stylishly loose, and often fell off one shoulder, à la Jennifer Beals in "Flashdance." When this girl wore such tops, they revealed her startlingly pale white skin covered with freckles. Once, I saw her coming out of the Men's Room, a scandalous, unthinkable thing to most women at the time - including me, though both washrooms were single rooms without stalls, so there were no privacy issues. She always had a different boyfriend, and the boys were always pretty and exceedingly attentive, and indistinguishable from one another. She always seemed consummately bored with it all.

There was something compellingly waifish about her tough attempts at jadedness, and I was fascinated by her boldness. Sort of like Rosanna Arquette admiring Madonna in "Desperately Seeking Susan" but without the stalking and no harm done, unless you count a poem.

Once, in the winter, I saw a city bus go by, and her unique, identifiable hairdo made a bluish shadow on the frost-silvered window of the bus. I never saw her again.

Publication details Return to Poem Index of poems Carrie's first page Home