Figure B3 STERILE
Here we may not linger — down a stair,
Which halfway turns to up, or so it seems,
Climb to a lonely strand. The briny air
Wakes our drowsy senses, and the gleams
Of breakers dazzle. The ocean teems
With life, but on the land is nothing more
Than arid rock, bleached by the Sun’s beams.
Three milliards of years must pass before
The first brave plants begin to populate the shore.