Sunday, April 22, 2012

CCXCIV - Darwin's Finch

I was listening to a talk recently where the speaker used the line
"Like Darwin's finch, we must adapt or die".  It touched a chord.

Darwin’s Finch

On each island you will find a different bird,
Adapted to the vagaries of its habitance.
While they have no control of what occurred,
They’ve made the most of their inheritance.

Their families come from a  common thread,
Their surrounds have given divergency.
Their beaks and foods and even songs, it’s said,
Have been pushed by evolutionary urgency.

We, too, are confined to an island home,
Set in the vast ocean of intergalactic space.
As resources dwindle and populations grow,
Environmental impacts will  be commonplace.

In the New World, hotter, wetter and, oh so brave,
With what kind of finch will we share our cave?

© 2012   J Cosmo Newbery
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  1. I would say let's wait until the 26th century before we worry about sharing caves with finches .. and cockroaches of course. but, alas, what with all the polar ice caps melting and such, an environmental armagedon might be much sooner.

  2. nice...def something to think on...we will have to adapt as we go forward...and in that who will end up adapting best and thus surviving...we are not too far off today you know...if it becomes all about me, maybe my future comes into have missed the adaption...

  3. Good poem! All the fundamentalists will have switched off their 'puters though :)

  4. Glad that you made the point that there is no conscious choice in the evolutionary process, whereas most takes on it seem to suggest there is some sort of determinism at work.

  5. Foam: I suspect the 26th century is an optimistic assessment. Waiting is a luxury.

    Sue: The fundamentalists believe God will save them. Bully for them. But I don't want to be governed by their weird ideas.

    Jill: I feel there is determinism n human change as there is a conscious application (or ignoring) of the knowledge that we have. Not so for the finches. Mind you, determinism suggests that there is only one outcome from a given set of circumstances - time and time again people have shown the ability to circumvent government attempts at controlling them. The Chinese 'one child' policy is an example of that.

  6. Very gritty and oh so true!

  7. More than chord touching - much closer to the ringing of bells.

  8. hey i been here before...and i appreciate the from all the more now that i tried it...feeling rather beat up now...ha....but yours is cohesive and i remember too the thoughts it rang my first read...


  9. I enjoyed this "Science Sonnet" -- refreshingly clear and straight forward. Does it qualify as a sonnet without the meter thing (iambic pentameter ...)? I am new to poems. But love the science. And I liked visualizing a much different version of a finch huddled with a very different looking human as we both adapt to change.

    PS: "Set is the vast" or "Set IN the vast..." ?

    PSS: I saw the "Shun Word Verification" thing in your side bar. I detest that too and wish blogspot folks would all turn it off -- as well as comment verification.

    But another pet peeve of mine is comment hierarchy. Read here if you are curious and then see if it changes you finchy habits. :-)
    Thanks again for the poem, dude.

  10. A green sonnet, in Shakespearean form..well constructed both in rhyme and meaning. Lovely piece.

  11. I have read an article on this topic - fascinating to ponder.


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