Posts Tagged ‘objective’

Watching the PBS Special on the Ice Age

They are like tree rings, the tusks of the wooly mammoth.

The announcer explains how they show years of abundance

and years of scarcity. Even to a woman sitting on her couch

watching the NOVA special, the difference is obvious. Thick bands,

narrow bands. It all had to do with weather, says the voice.

Well, that is a simplification, but that’s basically what he says.

The last few years of this specific mammoth’s life were tough.

The announcer speculates many consecutive seasons of drought

or cold. I wonder what if the heart could show such trends.

What if the right camera lens or carbon test could show

which years of a life were full of warmth and love and which

were marked by chill? They are worth something, the tusks,

regardless how thick or thin the rings. They are valuable

just because they are what they are. And the heart, well,

I imagine the announcer, how he might say, “We can see

how in this season the environment was less favorable.”

And there would be no judgment in his voice. Not really

compassion, either. Just a well-modulated narration

of how things are. Sometimes it is difficult. Sometimes we thrive.

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