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Buckminster Fuller on the celestial fleet

R. Buckminster Fuller Jr., who invented the geodesic dome, was also a philosopher and poet. After a personal crisis in the 1920s, he resolved to ``search for the principles governing the universe and help advance the evolution of humanity in accordance with them.'' His word ``dymaxion,'' coined from ``dynamic'' and ``maximum,'' reflected his search for ways to maximize use of the world's energy resources. Here, in an excerpt from ``Intuition'' (1972), a poetry collection, he looks at travel from a galactic perspective. Our Sun squadron of planetary spaceships Speeds within our Galactic System- At thousands of times Our Earth's speed around the Sun. Our enormous spiral nebula constitutes The grand fleet of local Universe space vehicles- Which fleet we speak about In English as the Milky Way. While all this celestial fleet maneuvering transpires, Operating at cosmic flank-speeds, I often have Earth passengers say to me, ``I don't see how you can stand such traveling!'' They are referring, of course, Only to the terrestrially myopic fact That I sleep In about two hundred different beds During two hundred different nights of the year Somewhere around our planet And dwell for another hundred nights In the general facilities of world airlines. The remaining sixty-five nights of the year Find me sleeping in one of three beds: One on the East Coast, One on the West Coast, And on the other in the middle Of the U.S. of North America. Such one hundred thousand miles per year Terrestrial travel is trivial When compared to an astronaut's One million miles per week, Or the Moon's six billion miles per year Sun-orbiting corkscrew travel.

From the book ``Intuition'' by R. Buckminster Fuller, copyright 1970, 1972, 1973 by R. Buckminster Fuller, published by Doubleday & Co., New York.

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