GSA Annual Meeting in Seattle, Washington, USA - 2017

Paper No. 166-6
Presentation Time: 9:00 AM-6:30 PM


MILLER, Marli B., Department of Earth Sciences, University of Oregon, 1272 University of Oregon, Cascade Hall, Eugene, OR 97403,

Of course geology songs are great for field trips –but they also work for lecture classes. I played guitar and sang my original song “Weathering Released Me” last winter to my large enrollment introductory geology course (surface processes). The song details the life history of a sand grain, from its birth as a crystal in a granitic magma chamber through uplift, weathering and erosion, deposition, and all over again. The students’ enthusiasm amazed me—and I was thrilled that I could work in terms such as “saltate” and concepts such as lithification and geologic time.

I would like to present my song accompanied by my guitar. Lyrics to the first verse and chorus as follows:

I am a sand grain, and I was born a long time ago. In a dark magma chamber, a place where other crystals grow. My mother was a granite and she built a mountain so high. Through many years of uplift, I finally saw that blue sky!

Chorus: Then weathering released me. The wind blew me away. I was born to saltate, ramble and stray. Each year a little smaller as my corners wear away. I keep on going places ‘cus I have nowhere to stay.