The records show the world at rest. The smallest hum of vibration; as felt wrapped wood primes the sloping surface of the gong for the strike, the world abound with bacteria, soon hard parts formed. Each starts with a tiny mutation multiplied infinitesimally over years the number of which we can barely imagine. And then with lamprey, and next with shark. The ripples become a splash as variations made many or manifold, specialize and detail. The ranks swell and expand, they fill each nook and corner. And next the fish and the toad. Their success is blinding and deaf, throbbing through esophagi and reverberating hollow chambers below, but even in that moment, ecstatic triumph, a glint in an eye or off sloping plated chrome, what's this? The dinosaur roams, the mammal skitters and hops. Moments without number, a single grain falling onto a mountain of sand, each hourglass resident never knowing, which is the last, which is the last? How many come and gone? The meteorite or volcanic flow or the flash in the pan or guttering of the flame, as each compass must gather the points into a circle, all species, yes, even this, describe the parabola, and assemble to make the ocean.