Tuesday, April 14, 2009

The calming thought of all

That coursing on, whate'er men's speculations,
Amid the changing schools, theologies, philosophies,
Amid the bawling presentations new and old,
The round earth's silent vital laws, facts, modes continue.

- Walt Whitman from Sands at Seventy.

Now I am nearing Seventy and have learned to appreciate what Whitman said. Earth does not care about what we think, or how we vote, or even if we vote. It only reacts according to what we do and that just may be our undoing.

Would someone read a little Whitman to Sen Inhofe.


Tian said...

My Dad's favorite says something similar:

"The Moving Finger writes; and having writ,

Moves on: nor all thy Piety nor Wit

Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line,

Nor all thy Tears wash out a Word of it."

- Omar Khayyam, page 42 of the Rubaiyat

Wes said...

Similar mood, Tian, but very different ideas. Khayyam was writing about history and moral action. Whitman presented a fundamental fact of ecology, though he had probably never heard that term.