A Farewell

This post will be my last for the foreseeable future. The blog site itself, with the current content, will remain available as long as visitors continue to drop in. The Table of Contents serves as a guide to the themes and articles.

My grateful thanks to the readers over the years who checked in regularly and commented helpfully. You helped me keep the posts going.

In 2012 I began the blog in order to write about the relevance of biology and evolution to my personal experiences and beliefs. Prior to that, as I was retiring from teaching English, I realized that I lacked a foundation for understanding such issues as aging, dying, afterlife, struggle, consciousness, and the nature of being alive. It was not clear to me what I thought or believed about too many important things.

Exploring basic evolutionary biology has brought me much of what I had hoped for. Not that my ideas and outlooks will become static as I approach 80, but now I have a foundation for making sense of where old fears, new joys, and fleeting intuitions fit in.

But the more I’ve learned, the more difficult it has become to integrate complex knowledge with my inner life – and then to explain it all in writing. For now, the blog has done its job and I’m burned out. I may return to 38by.blog in the future, or not. It’s time to move on to other interests in the time remaining.

May all your lives – may all living things – flourish in kindness.

Brock Haussamen

3.8 Poems: Tom Valasek’s “Pipe Dream for Earth Day”

Tom Valasek is a retired community-college professor who began writing poetry in his 70’s. His poems often concern the environment. Here he whimsically considers a chain of events that might lead the way to our coping with pollution.

Pipe Dream for Earth Day

I imagine a tanker ten time larger than Exxon Valdez
with a giant sea shovel powered by solar
that will scoop up great gobs of plastic
from the Great Pacific Garbage Patch
and compress it into blocks denser than osmium
for foundations of earthquake-proof buildings
with no carbon footprint and lush rooftop gardens
that will suck all the carbon from smog over China
and close the ozone hole over the Arctic
so Norwegian scientists won’t need to worry about melanoma
and devote all their talents to hydrogen fusion
or algorithms to stunt the impact of overpopulation
and reduce our consumption of fossil-fuel products
so we can spend our free time planting more trees.

How hard can that be?