Saturday, April 23, 2022

The Creation by E.O. Wilson

The Creation: An Appeal to Save Life on Earth by E.O. Wilson

The Creation: An Appeal to Save Life on Earth (2006) is a short book by Edward O. Wilson. In it, E.O. Wilson makes an appeal to preserve Earth's biodiversity. The book is written as a letter to a Southern pastor, and though Wilson sometimes returns to this concept, most of the book is geared towards general readers, students, naturalists, scientists, and teachers.

While my husband was at Harvard, we lived in a building where E.O. Wilson once lived. I also share his deep appreciation for the natural world.

One of my favorite quotes from this book is the introduction to Chapter 7, "Wild Nature and Human Nature," pictured below:

"Our relationship to Nature is primal. The emotions it evokes arose during the forgotten prehistory of mankind, and hence are deep and shadowed. Like childhood experiences lost from conscious memory, they are commonly felt but rarely articulated. Poets, at the highest human level of expression, try."

The Creation: An Appeal to Save Life on Earth by E.O. Wilson

One of my other favorite quotes is in Chapter 13, "Exploration of a Little-Known Planet," where Wilson writes,

"Each species is a small universe in itself, from its genetic code to its anatomy, behavior, life cycle, and environmental role, and a self-perpetuating system created during an almost unimaginably complicated evolutionary history. Each species merits careers of scientific study and celebration by historians and poets."

The Creation: An Appeal to Save Life on Earth by E.O. Wilson

Wilson emphasizes how much there remains to be learned about living creatures, how many species remain undiscovered, and how important it is to protect all forms of life on Earth.

Purchase and read books by E.O. Wilson:

The Creation: An Appeal to Save Life on Earth by E.O. Wilson On Human Nature by Edward O. Wilson Biophilia by Edward O. Wilson The Social Conquest of Earth by Edward O. Wilson


Friday, April 22, 2022


Poem and black and white photograph of a hummingbird by Ingrid Lobo


Thursday, April 7, 2022

A Thousand Mornings by Mary Oliver

A Thousand Mornings by Mary Oliver

A Thousand Mornings (2012) is a short volume of poetry by Mary Oliver. Her poems reflect on daily observations of the natural world, existence, and humanity.

Among my favorites in the volume is her poem "The Gardener."

Oliver writes,

"Have I lived enough?
Have I loved enough?" 

She continues,

"Actually, I probably think too much."

She concludes, by observing a gardener tending to the roses, his children.

I also enjoyed "Poem of the One World" where Oliver begins by observing a floating white heron. In "Lines Written in the Days of Growing Darkness," she reflects on the year's end. In "Green, Green is My Sister's House," Oliver writes of the wildness of spring.

In "The Moth, the Mountains, the Rivers," Oliver suggests that the reader spend worthwhile time with strange questions about nature so "that your spirit grown in curiosity, that your life be richer than it is."

Oliver has a beautiful way of reminding us to slow down, to observe our surroundings, and to find meaning in our everyday observations.

Read another review of interest:

Check out my review of Mary Oliver's Felicity.

An interview with Mary Oliver:

Listen to a 2012 interview with Mary Oliver about A Thousand Mornings at NPR. Oliver reads from her book. She also speaks about writing in the morning to set up her day and about her love of words and the mechanics of poetry.

Purchase and read books by Mary Oliver:

A Thousand Mornings by Mary Oliver Felicity by Mary Oliver American Primative by Mary Oliver Winter Hours by Mary Oliver