January 19, 2010

10 species near Extinction. What would John Donne Say?

It’s long been one of my favorite poems. I had an old framed copy from the early page in Hemingway’s For Whom the Bell Tolls back when I was a boy:

John Donne

Meditation 17
Devotions upon Emergent Occasions

No man is an island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main. If a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as well as if a manor of thy friend’s or of thine own were. Any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind; and therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee…

Considering these ten species near extinction, I wonder, what number are we on the list? Do we not, as a species, realize that we are part of dominant over and yet vulnerable to the health of an ecosystem we all share?

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