Wednesday, March 28, 2012

The Frontier is Everywhere

We were hunters

and foragers.

The frontier was everywhere.

We were bounded only by the earth, and the ocean, and the sky.

The open road still softly calls.

Our little terraquious globe is the madhouse of those hundred thousand millions of worlds.

We, who cannot even put our own planetary home at order, riven with rivalries and hatreds. Are we to venture out into space?

By the time we are ready to settle even the nearest other planetary systems, we will have changed...

The simple passage of so many generations will have changed us.

Necessity will have changed us.

We are an adaptable species.

It will not be we who will reach Alpha Centauri and the other nearby stars. It will be a species very like us, but with more of our strengths...

and fewer of our weaknesses.

More confident,



and prudent.

For all our failings, despite our limitations and fallibilities, we humans are capable of greatness.

What new wonders, undreamed of in our time, will we have wrought in another generation?

And another?

How far will our nomadic species will have wandered by the end of the next century?

And the next millenia?

Our remote descendants,
safely arrayed on many worlds through the solar system and beyond
will be unified
by their common heritage, by their regards for their home planet,
and by the knowledge that whatever other life may be,

the only humans in all the universe

come from Earth.

They will gaze up, and strain to find the blue dot in their skies.

They will marvel at how vulnerable the depository of our own potential once was.

How perilious, our infancy.

How humble, our beginnings.

How many rivers we had to cross

 before we found our way.

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