for Tom Lombardo and Nicholas Maxwell
How did it come to be life happened here—
That this great globe in space could generate
From primal elements an atmosphere
That breathed into an inorganic state
What animated it and bid it breed
So over eons it grew more complex
As if by plan, eventually to succeed
In making something with immense prospects:
That would be us. Now, what are we to do?
Grow wise and exercise that sapience
For which we’ve doubly named ourselves, but who
Alas, for all our progress, remain dense.
Still, wisdom is implicit in our race,
And it’s our mission to express that grace.