In one essay, Eiseley imagines a scene around a question asked by a young student during an Eiseley lecture on evolution.
Instead of the words, I hear a faint piping, and see an eager scholar’s face squeezing and dissolving on the body of a chest-thumping ape.. . . I see it then — the trunk that stretches monstrously behind hin. it winds out of the door, down dark and obscure corridors in the cellar, and vanishes into the floor. It writhes, it crawls, it barks and snuffles and roars, and the odor of the swamp exhales from it. That pale young scholar’s face is the last bloom on a curious animal extrusion through time . . . I too am a many-visaged thing that has climbed upward out of the dark of endless leaf falls, and has slunk, furred, through the glitter of blue glacial nights.
From The Firmament of Time, highlighted by Gerber and McFadden in their biography.