One of These
So many kinds of animals live upon the earth,
From elephants to fish to ants—some hatching, some from birth.
Some will walk or swim or fly; some will crawl or climb—
A million and a half so far, with more found all the time.
From ocean blue to desert sand to life among the trees—
A million and a half, and more, and we are one of these.
Vertebrates are animals that have a backbone strong,
With bones to give them shape and strength and help them move along.
So many animals have bones—turtles, snakes, and cats,
Salamanders, fish and birds, and tiny nighttime bats.
Sixty thousand vertebrates; some we name with ease
Animals with bones inside, and we are one of these.
Mammals are warm-blooded, and they nurse their babies small,
Babies who are born alive, no egg or shell at all
Mammals bearing fur or hair, for warmth all through the night,
Or in the winter snuggled safe, curled up warm and tight.
Five thousand kinds, and even more, on land and in the seas.
Big and small, but mammals all, and we are one of these.
Million species o’er the earth, each with a Latin name.
Ours is Homo sapiens; all humans have the same.
These two words in Latin mean, “a person who is wise,”
An inspiration, then, to be just what our name implies
Let’s wisely look at life on earth, from bison down to bees,
And dwell in harmony with all, for we are one of these.