Aurelia and the Spider

Illustration 090

Aurelia and the Spider

The  muslin torn, from tears of grief

In vain Aurelia sought relief;

In sighs and plaints she pass'd the day;

The tatter'd frock neglected lay:

While busied at the weaving trade,

A spider heard the sighing maid

And kindly stopping in a trice,

Thus offer'd (gratis) her advice:

"Turn, little girl! behold in me

A stimulus to industry

Compare your woes, my dear, with mine,

Then tell me who should most repine:

This morning, ere you left your room,

The chambermaid's remorseless broom

In one sad moment that destroy'd,

To build which thousands were employ'd!

The shock was great; but as my life

I saved in the relentless strife,

I knew lamenting was in vain,

So patient went to work again.

By constant work, a day or more,

My little mansion did restore:

And if each tear which you have shed

Had been a needle-full of thread,

If every sigh of sad despair

Had been a stitch of proper care,

Closed would have been the luckless rent,

Nor thus the day have been misspent."

Illustration 091