SETI A Hymn to Life in the Universe

Robert Owen (
Sat, 25 Sep 1999 19:58:24 -0400

                    ~ A HYMN TO LIFE IN THE UNIVERSE ~

                                      by Don Lago

To help him order the world in his mind man has had to order the world
with his hands, lifting tons of metal out of the ground where it lay for
millions of years and shaping it into sensitive machines. The antenna
in the desert had arisen out of the wilderness of Earth to probe the
wilderness of the cosmos.

>From the desert of his own planet man studies the desert of space,
absorbing into his giant leaf the raw energies wafting through the cosmos.
He sees the turmoil in every star and and listens to the heartbeats of
pulsars. He sees the savage profusion of quasars, the unquenchable
hunger of black holes, the swarming crowds of stars in the center of
galaxies to the empty void between them. He watches the massive
storms raging all across the universe and feels the winds of radiation
pouring from them into into space.

And yet, from out of this chaos man still hoped to detect an energy whose
pulse could not be born in any star. At night humans would look upon the
universe and feel sure that it was there, somewhere in the darkness and
spreading across the galaxy like ripples in a lake.

Someday this wave would find Earth and man. It would ring in his antenna
with an order so clear and delicate that man could be sure it had arisen
not from the heart of any star, but from the same force throbbing in his
own cells and every cell on Earth, the only force in the universe able to
create such order.

Then man would know beyond any doubt that somewhere else in the
universe the dance of life had started and triumphed, drawing the chaos
around it into its flow and giving it form, crafting energy out of its rawness
until it glowed with wisdom and called across the void between the stars
for someone to share its wonder.

           ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Don Lago describes himself thus: "My occupation is finding out what
people who have lived before me have discovered and thought about
the world, and occasionally I have an interesting thought of my own.
This is a full-time job in itself and doesn't leave much time to waste
on such things as making money, which I am doing at a bookstore.
I was born on the planet Earth (let's not be provincial), and plan to
spend most of my life there. I find it very exciting to be alive when
man is first searching for other minds in the universe, and hope to
live long enough to learn what they have thought about the cosmos."

           ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
This work is extensively edited and abridged for presentation in the email
format which often requires extreme condensation of the original. Thus
I encourage you to read the entire poem at:


CREDIT: Cosmic Search Vol. 1 No. 4 Copyright 1979 Cosmic Quest, Inc.

Robert M. Owen
The Orion Institute
57 W. Morgan Street
Brevard, NC 28712-3659 USA

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