Click to enlargeAPRIL 22/EARTH DAY BEGINNINGS
MEN WALK ON MOON
Photo: PAGE ONE/New York Times/July 21, 1969
"Voyage to the Moon" Poem by Archibald MacLeish

APRIL 22 BEGINNINGS

HAPPY ANNIVERSARY EARTH DAY 1970-2010

OVERVIEW

Until 1835 Copernicus' De Revolutionibus Orbium Coelestium was on the list of banned books. This book explained the revolutionary theory of a sun-centered solar system with its orbiting objects, planets, revolving around it in contrast with the geocentric model which placed the Earth at the center of the solar system.
The Earth is one of the planets orbiting the sun. A planet is defined as a body that orbits the sun (or another star) and produces no light of its own, but reflects the light of the sun or star. Moons are natural bodies (as opposed to a man-made satellite) that orbit around seven of our solar system's planets. Although moons do not orbit the sun independently, they are still considered members of the solar system. The sun is nearly 93 million miles (150 million kilometers) from Earth and, like the planets, rotates about its axis.
The Earth has one moon and in July 20, 1969 for the first time in history
  • MEN WALK ON MOON

    VOYAGE TO THE MOON

    By ARCHIBALD MacLEISH

    Presence
    among us,
    wanderer in our skies,
    dazzle of silver in our leaves and on our
    waters silver,
    O
    silver evasion in our farthest thought--
    "the visiting moon"..."the glimpses of the moon"...
    and we have touched you!
    From the first time,
    before the first of time, before the
    first men tasted time, we thought of you.
    You were a wonder to us, unattainable,
    a longing past the reach of longing,
    a light beyond our light, our lives--perhaps
    a meaning to us...
    Now
    our hands have touched you in your depth of night.
    Three days and three nights we journeyed,
    steered by farthest stars, climbed outward,
    crossed the invisible tide-rip where the floating dust
    falls one way or the other in the void between,
    followed that other down, encountered
    cold, faced death--unfathomable emptiness...
    Then, the fourth day evening, we descended,
    made fast, set foot at dawn upon your beaches,
    sifted between our fingers your cold sand.
    We stand here in the dusk, the cold, the silence...
    and here, as at the first of time, we lift our heads.
    Over us, more beautiful than the moon, a
    moon, a wonder to us, unattainable,
    a longing past the reach of longing,
    a light beyond our light, our lives--perhaps
    a meaning to us
    O, a meaning!
    over us on these silent beaches the bright
    earth,
    presence among us

    Published on Monday, July 21, 1969/New York Times/Page ONE
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