Poems 1817

karoli

. . . .

Where swarms of minnows show their little heads,
Staying their wavy bodies ’gainst the streams,
To taste the luxury of sunny beams
Temper’d with coolness. How they ever wrestle
With their own sweet delight, and ever nestle
Their silver bellies on the pebbly sand.
If you but scantily hold out the hand,
That very instant not one will remain;
But turn your eye, and they are there again.
The ripples seem right glad to reach those cresses,
And cool themselves among the em’rald tresses;
The while they cool themselves, they freshness give,
And moisture, that the bowery green may live  . . . .

John Keats (1795 – 1821) 

 

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Published in: on July 10, 2014 at 2:39 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Fragile Legacy

Portuguese Man-O'-War, Watercolor illustrations after John White, 1585-1593

Portuguese Man-O’-War, Watercolor illustrations after John White, 1585-1593

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/07/science/blaschka-glass-menagerie-inspires-marine-expedition.html?_r=0

MAUNA LANI REEF, Hawaii — After a long, cold swim in the dark, we spotted it on the night reef with our dive lights: Octopus ornatus, the ornate octopus, a foot-long creature in an amber shade of orange with bright white spots and dashes along all its arms.

It sat stolidly in the light of the camera, 30 feet below the surface, unfazed by the attention. I reached out a finger and it touched me with its suctioned tentacles. When it scuttled in the other direction, I herded it between my cupped hands as it watched me attentively with searching golden eyes.

As if levitating, it smoothly lifted off and tried to jet over my head, but slowly enough that I could catch it gently in midair — like handling a large bird, albeit one with eight sticky tentacles. Holding it at eye level, I looked into its eyes. I felt connected, sort of an octopus whisperer.

Then a tentacle slapped the front of my mask. The octopus crawled up my arm and vanished into the night.

. . . We are on a quest to lure these elusive and delicate invertebrates in front of the camera lens.

Our inspiration springs from an unlikely source: a collection of 570 superbly wrought, anatomically perfect glass sculptures of marine creatures from the 19th century.

These delicate folds and strands of glass make up the Blaschka collection of glass invertebrates at Cornell

. . . Our quest is also to use the Blaschka collection as a time capsule, to take a snapshot of change.
How many of these creatures that were so common 150 years ago can still be found today?

The oceans are changing rapidly, with a 30 percent increase in acidity in the last 200 years, lethally stressful warming in many tropical seas, and significant coastal pollution and overfishing just about everywhere. If ever there was a time to compare the plentiful past with an ocean in jeopardy, that time would be now.


C. Drew Harvell is the associate director for environment at the Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future at Cornell, and curator of the Cornell Collection of Blaschka Invertebrate Models.

http://opiniontoday.com/2013/05/06/a-glass-ocean/

Small-needing

stilled fish

. . . .

The fish is swift, small-needing, vague yet clear,
A cold, sweet, silver life, wrapped in round waves,
Quickened with touches of transporting fear.

. . . .

Leigh Hunt

‘Oekonomische Naturgeschichte der Fische Deutschlands’ M.E. Bloch

Johan Friedrich August Krueger c. 1785

Flying Gurnard

Jacopo Ligozzi, 1547–1627

Published in: on September 30, 2011 at 2:18 am  Leave a Comment  
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