Prehistoric man succeeding in colonising the world and gaining ascendancy over it, thanks to food production which took him away from his hunter-gatherer lifestyle. Grasses gave him domesticable candidates for crops and we have today wheat, rice, corn and a host of many other not so well known cereals. Without grasses, man would indeed starve to death.
One of the reasons, Walt Whitman’s poem “A child said, What is the grass?” appeared on this blog, is that I have a soft spot for this taken-for-granted genre of flora. Olivia Judson’s piece on the New York Times blog “Opinionator” appealed to me. So here it is. I wish I had this image (which I’m using under fair use from the NY Times post) for my own post on Whitman.