I can’t remember why I had Odilon Redon’s Smiling Spider sitting in media. I think I was going to do something with “lithography.” Yes, that’s right, and it was too technical a process to have any fun with. It is still a creepy-looking spider so I’m turning it into Odilon Redon’s Hallowe’en Spider.

I wanted to find a creepy-sounding spider story instead of a traditional Hallowe’en ghost story for an accompaniment, but found this instead — Before Lewis Carroll published Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, he replaced a parody he had written of a negro minstrel song in the tenth chapter, Lobster Quadrille, with a parody of  Mary Howitt’s poem The Spider and the Fly.

The Smiling Spider, Odilon Redon (1891)

The Spider and the Fly  by Mary Howitt (1799 – 1888)

Will you walk into my parlor?” said the spider to the fly;
“‘Tis the prettiest little parlor that ever you may spy.
The way into my parlor is up a winding stair,
And I have many curious things to show when you are there.” 

“Oh no, no,” said the little fly; “to ask me is in vain,  For who goes up your winding stair can ne’er come down again.” …

The Lobster Quadrille by Lewis Carroll (1832 – 1898)

“Will you walk a little faster?” said a whiting to a snail,
“There’s a porpoise close behind us, and he’s treading on my tail.
See how eagerly the lobsters and the turtles all advance!
They are waiting on the shingle – will you come and join the dance?

Will you, won’t you, will you, won’t you,
will you join the dance?
Will you, won’t you, will you, won’t you,
won’t you join the dance?” …


The Spider and the Fly and The Lobster Quadrille complete side-by-side comparison is linked here