Age of Humanity #poetry #anthropogenic

How does a mine move so much dirt? Here's my car next to a mine truck tire.

How does a mine move so much dirt? Here’s my car next to a mine truck tire.

Our numbers and our industry,
Fossil-fuels and farming,
New minerals called pottery –
Are bricks and glass alarming?
Chemicals that we create,
Plastics, fibers, microbeads –
Mining moves three times more silt
Than all Earth’s rivers can succeed.
Greenhouse gases, mass extinction,
And synthetic fertilizer
Disrupts Earth’s nutrient flow,
Leaves Nature’s rate of change a miser.
Only since the last Ice Age
Came a Totally New Epoch.
We have grown civilized
And now see where that led us.
Epochs used to last for ages,
Now the Holocene,
Only twelve millennia old,
Yields to – Anthropocene.
We humans mark the planet,
We humans modify,
We humans are the greatest cause,
We’re fruitful and we multiply.
Thanks to bloomberg.com for five signs of the Anthropocene. I’ve posted about the Epoch of Humanity before. It started in the year 1610 CE.

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Galactic Year – a #SolarSystem #poem by Kate Rauner

Impact!

Impact!

As our sphere orbits Sun,
So Sun orbits Black Hole
At the center of our galaxy,
As eternity unfolds.

In a quarter billion earthly years
Our solar system circles round,
Weaves thru the mid galactic plane
Where other stars are densely found.

Fifteen times since life began
We have circum-rotated,
And ten times in each orbit grand
The planet’s devastated.

Our Sun’s own cloud of comets
On the solar system’s edge
Are jostled from their sedate paths,
Fall inward from their ledge.

With corresponding timing
Ancient craters have been found.
It seems Earth’s plagued with comet storms
As the cosmic year spins round.

Life sized model

Life sized model

Bombardments are not good for life.
Half a dozen times
Mass extinctions cleared our world
As doomsday peals chimed.

Things have been quiet for some time
Since dinosaurs disappeared.
The Sun careens past cosmic dust,
Dark matter, stars, and fears.

Such grand cosmic motion can only be estimated, and the number of Earth’s mass-extinctions depends on your definition, but our movement through the galaxy makes me feel very small and oblivious.
space.com on extinctions and comet strikes
Wikipedia on Galactic year