Allama Muhammad Iqbal

(9 November 1877 - 21 April 1938 / Sialkot / British India)

A Spider And A Fly - Poem by Allama Muhammad Iqbal

One day a spider said to a fly
'Though you pass this way daily

My hut has never been honored by you
By making a chance visit inside by you

Though depriving strangers of a visit does not matter
Evading the near and dear ones does not look good

My house will be honored by a visit by you
A ladder is before you if you decide to step in

Hearing this the fly said to the spider,
'Sire, you should entice some simpleton thus

This fly would never be pulled into your net
Whoever climbed your net could never step down'

The spider said, 'How strange, you consider me a cheat
I have never seen a simpleton like you in the world

I only wanted to entertain you
I had no personal gain in view

You have come flying from some unknown distant place
Resting for a while in my house would not harm you

Many things in this house are worth your seeing
Though apparently a humble hut you are seeing

Dainty drapes are hanging from the doors
And I have decorated the walls with mirrors

Beddings are available for guests' comforts
Not to everyone's lot do fall these comforts'.

The fly said, 'All this may very well be
But do not expect me to enter your house

'May God protect me from these soft beds
Once asleep in them getting up again is impossible'

The spider spoke to itself on hearing this talk
'How to trap it? This wretched fellow is clever

Many desires are fulfilled with flattery in the world
All in the world are enslaved with flattery'

Thinking this the spider spoke to the fly thus!
'Madam, God has bestowed great honors on you!

Everyone loves your beautiful face
Even if someone sees you for the first time

Your eyes look like clusters of glittering diamonds
God has adorned your beautiful head with a plume

This beauty, this dress, this elegance, this neatness!
And all this is very much enhanced by singing in flight'.

The fly was touched by this flattery
And spoke, 'I do not fear you any more

I hate the habit of declining requests
Disappointing somebody is bad indeed'

Saying this it flew from its place
When it got close the spider snapped it

The spider had been starving for many days
The fly provided a good leisurely meal

Comments about A Spider And A Fly by Allama Muhammad Iqbal

  • (5/21/2017 1:34:00 PM)

    Many desires are fulfilled with flattery in the world
    All in the world are enslaved with flattery'

    A Good fable, illustrating what a twisted web flattery can do, never trust a spider to say a nice word.
    (Report) Reply

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  • Geeta Radhakrishna Menon (5/21/2017 7:47:00 AM)

    An intense poem of how one can be enticed and trapped by flattery.
    Beautifully written.
    (Report) Reply

  • Bernard F. Asuncion (5/21/2017 5:25:00 AM)

    Great honors.... thanks for posting..... (Report) Reply

  • Tom Allport (5/21/2017 4:50:00 AM)

    a very truthful poem of flattery does get you anywhere? ..............well written. (Report) Reply

  • Anil Kumar Panda (5/21/2017 2:47:00 AM)

    Very nice story with a good message. Thanks for sharing. Liked it. (Report) Reply

  • Rajnish Manga (5/21/2017 2:13:00 AM)

    Wonderful narrative with lovely tale and its profound message. Thanks. (Report) Reply

  • Edward Kofi Louis (5/21/2017 1:58:00 AM)

    'I only want to entertain you'! Entertainment which leads to sin. Thanks for sharing this poem with us. (Report) Reply

  • Mohammed Asim Nehal (10/31/2016 1:18:00 PM)

    A great lesson in this philosophical conversation, how easily we get trapped in sweet talks and start believing in flattery praise....Loved it..100+ (Report) Reply

  • Susan Williams (3/17/2016 3:21:00 PM)

    Ha! He certainly got this right- - - - - - - -]
    - - - - - - - - - - - - - Many desires are fulfilled with flattery in the world
    All in the world are enslaved with flattery'
    (Report) Reply

  • Brian Jani (7/14/2014 4:04:00 AM)

    what a poetic angle of view of the classic rivalry of the spider and the fly.well written poem Allama (Report) Reply

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Poem Submitted: Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Poem Edited: Tuesday, July 31, 2012

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