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In his 1962 paper, which he had called an “essay in geopoetry,” Hess proposed that upwelling limbs of mantle convection cells would correspond to mid-ocean ridges beneath.
His essay juxtaposes the Anthropecene with the Ediacaran eras, which are spans of time justified by geological evidence. The Ediacaran is named for South Australia where the oldest rocks on the planet (that we know of so far) formed between 575 and 542 million years ago. McKay says he is writing “geopoetry.” In fact, he’s looking at “the crucial concept of a dynamic planet” that led.
In this dissertation I develop a vocabulary and a strategy for reading birds and ecology in Don McKay's poetry. Stressing the importance of understanding such sciences as ornithology and ecology when adopting an interdisciplinary ecocriticism, I posit science textbooks, field guides, and extra-textual experience as valid intertextual referents. At base, my dissertation follows McKay's.
I shall consider this paper an essay in geopoetry. In order not to travel any further into the realm of fantasy than is absolutely necessary I shall hold as closely as possibly to a uniformitarian approach; even so, at least one great catastrophe will be required early in the Earth's history. — Harry Hammond Hess.
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Geopoetry makes it legitimate for the natural historian or scientist to speculate and gawk, and equally legitimate for the poet to benefit from close observation, and from some of the amazing facts that science turns up. It provides a crossing point, a bridge over the infamous gulf separating scientific from poetic frames of mind, a gulf which has not served us well, nor the planet we inhabit.
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