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Saturday, May 19, 2012


August 1983, Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA

Religion usually locates Hell, underground.

So our fear of bats hold a clue, to the image of Hell, and of the Devil, our Patermeister of flapped wing:

     Webbed beast of Fire and slime.
     Boiled ire and cheated Time.

The year round temperature of most caves is constant.  - some creatures live both inside and out - some never leave.  Various commuters' bring the food in.

The Cave Salamander flees from light, to the caves during the day, leaves nourishment in the form of droppings, rich in nitrates,

For the the 'Cave Mouth Cricket'', life is short. He sings with a rasp, yet dies, just as fast.

Water has eroded Limestone Caves since the Ice Age - constant erosion, new caves forming, cave architecture's testament to this process.

The sparseness of life exposes a greater simplicity of living relationships.

Another commuter, the crayfish. Some stay, and lose all pigmentation.

The White Crayfish, white and blind, like Lear. Sent to wander watery steams below the earth. Never to see the sun.

No need to see, no need for protective coloration, no need for eyes, smaller, moves slower, needs less, asks less. Opposite of nature's plenty, the cave dweller makes do with less. Here there may be clues to man's problem of overconsumption. Man, like the cricket, lives too fast, moves too fast.

The Blinde Whitefish - inhabits inner depths of these blackest rivers. Food is extremely scarce - lives 10-20 years, reproduces only every 2-3. Uses energy with extreme efficiency.

A great order and discipline, in this "Hell".

Creatures here isolated from complexities of the ordinary world. Nature's own isolated laboratory.

Dead leaves drift in on an autumn breeze, are carried downwater. . . a slow energy return.

The dung of animals - gold rich petroleum to these, nature's hungriest beings.

Slowfood vs. Fastfood.

Lake Erie's algal life, a repast of polluted death, human phosphates and heavy metal . . all 'dung' of a sort, provides for a diminishing life-scale. Perhaps the life forms that clean up our industrial nightmare will take eons to evolve, and will flourish, long after we're gone.

For what is life but a hierarchy of those that process energy? We are all light beings, even the darkest most forgotten blind fish amongst us.

The live fast and die fast types put most of their energy into reproduction. [Fat Daddy's wives lined up at his recording studio for their weekly checks. The bleating of his kids, mommies with carriages and other rolling stock.]

The animal world reacts to attack in ways that are sometimes surprising and inconvenient.

Less entropy in the cave, means colder, simpler, slower, more disciplined relationships between individuals and species. There's a snake that has learned to dine upon the carcasses of dead bats, fallen from the canopy. Whereas other snakes dine on live prey, this one . . . has learned of an untapped bounty.

Soon it too will be blind.


Notes from de Touqueville, Democracy in America:

Moving on, leaving, splitting: Mobility is an American quality. Americans are "a nomadic people before whom forests fall." - "The American in the wilderness is the same man you thought you'd left behind in the city. To become rich he'd endure loneliness and endless misery."

Will Nature follow man into the world he is creating, or will man fall back into Nature's bosom and become compost. Have we a destiny of other worlds awaiting our destruction? As swallows that build their nests on ledges inside sewage treatment plants, like the Brown Bambit that feeds on the plastic wiring insulation inside the household television, or the cockroach that has found it possible to survive alongside man virtually wherever he builds a city. Will the rest of nature prove as adaptable as man himself, or, is man's adaptability mere illusion?

What resilient species will accompany us on our journeys into the future?

-:- Mutagens and carcinogens, antigens and anti-carcinogens,. We have only begun to to count the compounds and substances fabricated by the plant kingdom, or understood the purposes for which she makes them. (comments of a scientist describing a certain anti-inflammatory present in vegetables.)

-:- The best fertilizer for gardens: hay left to rot. Cellulose, makes nice loose soil.

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