Friday, July 24, 2015
The periodic dinner tables host
A smorgasbord of elemental food.
Without the nutrient that’s needed most,
The spread of life’s substantially subdued.
When goethite settled out of ancient seas
The phosphorus adhered to iron mush.
Experimental doping can appease
Silicic activists and calcite crush.
If photoferrotrophs consume the P
Archean ocean surface life can’t grow.
No photosynthesis, O can’t be free
‘till rivers from the first great mountains flow.
Yet when a couple billion more years pass
Not P, but iron grows the biomass.