Four Thousand Million Years in the Making
Unbeknownst to exis’tence,
Who lived in bodies, firm and dense,
There looked upon with apprehence
An unknown entity.
Beings of a diff’rent class,
Not formed of solid, liquid, gas:
For not one atom had they mass,
But weightless energy.
When they looked upon the Earth
In hill and cave and brook and firth,
They found the rocks had given birth
To life most tangible.
Life alive as mould and trees,
And slugs and crabs and honeybees,
And frogs and crows and chimpanzees,
With tooth and mandible.
“This is outright blasphemy !”
They screamed in thought-like energy
“For never life can ever be
Built with a hard physique.
And they live at such extremes
In ocean depths and fissure seams
And in another’s fluid streams.
With mutant-gained technique.”
Terrified by solid life
They blew apart this world-midwife,
For only there could such be rife,
And now it was destroyed.
Rock and lava shattered thence
And sped across the void immense,
Without a single thought or sense:
A thousand asteroids.
Thus were ended carbon forms
In fumigating magma storms,
Biomass now dusty swarms;
But all this life is hard to kill,
And even in the deathly chill
Of outer space, it’s clinging still:
Patient and tenacious
As the debris drifts afar,
So come the tugging of some star
Upon this frozen reservoir,
And bring about a thaw.
Let them countless orbits make,
And with an endless time to take;
One bacterium shall wake,
And life resume once more.