How it Began – a poem by Heather Walker

How it Began 
Voice entered earth 1.5 billion years ago 
through cilia, a foundation for life’s awareness 
for sound waves. 
Before that, the roar of thunder, turning tides, 
wind howling its music across mountains 
and plains had no audience. 
Sometimes on a walk far away from roads 
and human contact you catch it, 
that feeling of being the first to hear. 

Cilia (or stereocilia) are hair cells found in the inner ear. They respond to fluid motion in animals and humans for various functions, including hearing and balance.

Heather Walker is a London-based writer of poetry and short fiction. She often writes about the human connection with earth. Her work has appeared in several anthologies as well as Ink Sweat & Tears, Visual Verse, Seaborne and Popshop.

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