THE SAGAN SERIES - The Frontier Is Everywhere

18

We were hunters and foragers

The frontier was everywhere

We were bounded only by the Earth, and the ocean, and the sky

The open road still softly calls

Our little terraqueous globe is the madhouse of those hundred, thousand, millions of worlds

We who cannot even put our own planetary home in order

Riven with rivalries and hatreds

Are we to venture out into space?

By the time we're ready to settle even the nearest other planetary systems

We will have changed

The simple passaged of so many generations will have changed us

Necessity will have changed us

We're an adaptable species

It will not be we who reach Alpha Centuri and the other nearby stars

It will be a species very like us

But with more of our strengths

And fewer of our weaknesses

More confident, far seeing, capable, and prudent

For all our failings, despite our limitations and fallibilities

We humans are capable of greatness

What new wonders undreamt of in our time

will we have wrought in another generation?

And another?

How far will our nomadic species have wandered by the end of the next century?

And the next millennium?

Our remote descendants, safely arrayed on many worlds 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 the universe

come from Earth

They will gaze up and strain to find the blue dot in their skies

They will marvel at how vulnerable the repository of our raw 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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