all that evolution for THIS?

Five hundred and fifty five million years ago
(which really is one helluva long time ago you know)
lived a worm the size of a grain of rice
the first of its kind with a mouth that bites
and a butt that squeezed out all the waste
from the endless snacks it ate with its mates
its name?
Ikaria wariootia
(which may or may not be new to ya)

my point is
this cute little joint is
our earliest common ancestor
(according to scientists at the research centre)
and from this worryingly wormy beginning
you get Attenborough
and a plethora
of fauna
swimming and flying
running and diving
leaving and arriving
or humping
or just slumping
in front of the TV
like me
and Stanley
stretched out in a food coma
on the sitting room sofa
two distinct species but arguably one loafer
as sedentary as any fossil you’d knock
from a sedimentary Australian rock

early surfers

‘Fossil hunters find evidence of 555m-year-old human relative’
The Guardian, Mon 23 March 2020

Ikaria wariootia / five hundred and fifty-five million years / before its picture finally appears / on the screen of my computer / anonymously famous / the bean-like creature that became us / minutely modelling mouth and anus / demonstrating with sweet simplicity / the evolutionary benefits of left and right symmetry / nudging through the ooze / on its long, sedimentary cruise / wallowing, swallowing / blindly following / the restless motive fact / of its elegantly elementary, alimentary tract / an ambitious snoot / snuffling around at the root / of the great ancestral tree / that branches out to humans like me / scavenging on the internet endlesslyIMG_1870