How many rivers we had to cross

door Vulpius

We were hunters and foragers. The frontier was everywhere. We were bounded only by the earth, and the ocean, and the sky. The open roads still, soft and cause. Our little terraqueous globe is the madhouse of those hundred, thousand, millions of worlds. We who cannot even put our planetary home in order, riven with rivalries and hatred, are we to venture out into space?

By the time we are ready to settle even the nearest planetary systems, we will have changed. The simple passage of so many generations will have changed us. The necessity will have changed us. We’re an adaptable species. It’ll not be we who reach Alpha Centauri and the other new by stars, it’ll be a species very like us, but with more of our strengths and fewer of our weaknesses. More confident, farseeing, capable and prudent. For all our failings, despite our limitations and fallibilities, we humans are capable of greatness. What new wonders undreamed of in our time will we have rot in another generation and another. How far will have our nomadic species have wondered, by the end of the next century and the next millennium. Our remote descendants safely arrayed on many worlds in through the solar system and beyond, will be unified. By their common heritage, by their regard for their home planet, and by the knowledge that whatever other life may be, the only humans in all this universe, come from earth.

They will gaze up and strain to find the blue dot in their skies. They will marvel that how vulnerable the repository of war potential once was. How perilous our infancy. How humble our beginnings. How many rivers we had to cross before we found our way.

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