Remains of Cambrian

‘83 million more people
Are alive in the world
This year than last year’
Announces the newsman.
‘Adding up to roughly
7.5 billion human beings
On the planet today’
Counts the census.
‘Representing one of the largest animal
Populations on Earth, after
Bacteria, krill, ants, rats
And domesticated chickens’
Claims the biologist.
600 million cats,
Fish and birds
Not one soul knows.
As big or bigger mammals
None dare to outnumber the happy family.
‘1.4 billion cattle
1.1 billion sheep
And only half a million
Elephants’
Estimates the zoologist.
99 percent of all species
That ever lived on Earth,
Extinct.
That is 5 billion species
We’ll never meet.
Reflection is made
Upon the 12 million species
That still are thought to exists,
Of which merely 1.2 million
Catalogued by experts
Unable to connect with the remaining
86 percent of their planetmates.
And yet one and only question
Persists:
‘How long will we survive?’
Humanity paranoid by its own existence
Afraid of its someday
Inevitable extinction,
Confuses its place in the wide picture
Alerting the world will come to an end
When it will simply be replaced
By some stronger or less obnoxious
Living creature.
‘We’ll never die!’
Reassures the fool praising its intelligence,
While the believer prays
The optimist enjoys
The pessimist surrenders
And the 5 billion species we’ll never meet
Refuel our cars and bring us light
With the buried remains
Of the only trace to their prehistoric presence.
‘How long will we survive?’
‘Do not dwell on the extent, live!’
Consciousness might suggest.

lascaux-2

[Featured images: Lascaux paintings dating around 17,000 years BP]

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