Time marched on. Each day seemed long, each week short. It was already autumn. What is the salient characteristic of autumn? The spiders’ threads in the early morning frost. I am not thinking much of the circular networks, marvellous as these are, hung along the gate, but rather the threads that are strung across everything, so that if you bend down till your eye is level with the field you can see a white veil over the whole expanse. They are everywhere, on everything. ‘Do they drape the cannons in France?’ asked Mr Ralph Wightman, true poet, in a striking image, the other day. To look down at these things is like looking up at the stars — we are baffled by quantity.
John Stewart Collis in The Worm Forgives the Plough