58 Design

Robert Frost

I found a dimpled spider, fat and white,

On a white heal-all, holding up a moth

Like a white piece of rigid satin cloth—

Assorted characters of death and blight

Mixed ready to begin the morning right,

Like the ingredients of a witches’ broth—

A snow-drop spider, a flower like froth,

And dead wings carried like a paper kite.


What had that flower to do with being white,

The wayside blue and innocent heal-all?

What brought the kindred spider to that height,

Then steered the white moth thither in the night?

What but design of darkness to appal?—

If design govern in a thing so small.


“Design” by Robert Frost was published in American Poetry, 1922, edited by Edna St. Vincent Millay and Robert Frost. It is in the public domain and was accessed from Project Gutenberg at: https://www.gutenberg.org/cache/epub/25880/pg25880-images.html#DESIGN.


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