Saturday, 18 of April of 2015

Sid Bridges – Our Hubris and Extinctions

CTNMU130_Reconyx_Anteater
Kenneth_Worthy
We, the thinking animals, are outsmarted by the African
Anteater as depicted in a nature film. The anteater on
the African savanna mainly feeds on termites whose mounds
dot the savanna. The hungry anteater spends two minutes
scraping a hole in the outer shell of the mound and spends
one minute licking up termites with his lengthy tongue,
then he leaves and goes to another mound. In this way he
never decimates the termite population and leaves food for
other termites. The mound also provides a home for birds
and even small owls. The mound Is well insulated
and provides safety from prairie fires.

Compare that to the behavior of the thinking animal. Many
of us have seen the mammoth ocean trawlers dumping their
equally mammoth nets onto the trawler’s decks. Species
that humans don’t eat, already dead, are dumped back into
the ocean. The ocean floor is often scraped and scoured
eliminating future generations of ocean life. Cod fishing
on the grand banks is defunct. It has gone the way of the
passenger pigeons, by the same cause. Nature, deemed by
man, as mindless, manages to preserve and insure life’s
continuity. Nature preserves what has taken millions of
years for her to build. It preserves the ecosystem, while
the thinking animal talks preservation, but does little.
So the question is, is man smarter than the anteater?

Humans have the habit of exterminating creatures without
knowing what purpose they provide in nature. The only
good thing petroleum ever did was to provide the oil that
replaced whale oil once used to light homes and other uses
of oil. Prior to the use of fossil fuels to replace whale
oil, we were hunting whales to near extinction. Now we
know that whale fecal matter provides needed nutrients for
the rest of the creatures of the sea. Then, there is the
small wasp without which we would not have brazil nuts.

Are we smarter than nature’s anteater?


Philip Levine – Our Valley

Miro Majorek - Pacheco Pass

mw2.google
 
 
 
We don’t see the ocean, not ever, but in July and August
when the worst heat seems to rise from the hard clay
of this valley, you could be walking through a fig orchard
when suddenly the wind cools and for a moment
you get a whiff of salt, and in that moment you can almost
believe something is waiting beyond the Pacheco Pass,
something massive, irrational, and so powerful even
the mountains that rise east of here have no word for it.

You probably think I’m nuts saying the mountains
have no word for ocean, but if you live here
you begin to believe they know everything.
They maintain that huge silence we think of as divine,
David_D_Alleea silence that grows in autumn when snow falls
slowly between the pines and the wind dies
to less than a whisper and you can barely catch
your breath because you’re thrilled and terrified.

You have to remember this isn’t your land.
It belongs to no one, like the sea you once lived beside
and thought was yours. Remember the small boats
that bobbed out as the waves rode in, and the men
who carved a living from it only to find themselves
carved down to nothing. Now you say this is home,
so go ahead, worship the mountains as they dissolve in dust,
wait on the wind, catch a whiff of salt, call it our life.

Philip Levine, a Poet of Grit, Sweat & Labor, Dies at 87


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