An explanation provided by Mark O'Brien . . .
Submerging to the ocean's blackest depths,
Ballooning through the brilliant stratosphere,
The geophysicists explore our world.
With instruments as sensitive as skin,
They track seismic waves beneath our feet,
Detect the radiation overhead.
The leading edge of curiosity,
They explicate the mysteries of Earth
And bring the world into the human mind.
O'Brien contracted poliomyelitis when he was six years old and relied on an iron lung to help him breathe for much of the rest of his life. He strove to live life on his own terms, attending the University of California, Berkeley and earning a bachelor's degree in English. O'Brien attended U.C. Berkeley's Graduate School of Journalism for a year but did not complete a degree. After leaving the School of Journalism, O'Brien worked as a journalist and poet. Because O'Brien could not use his hands, his drafts are typescripts (he could type using a mouth stick). Some of his work was dictated; some of his school assignments were transcribed by note takers and attendants.
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