The Fate of the Sun

Some say the world will end in fire,

Some say in ice.

From what I've tasted of desire

I hold with those who favor fire.

But if it had to perish twice,

I think I know enough of hate

To say that for destruction ice

Is also great

And would suffice.*

Robert Frost wrote Fire and Ice in 1923, some four decades before astrophysicists were able to fathom how the sun -- and thus the earth -- would die. Nonetheless, he was basically correct: first fire, then ice. The fire will not be an explosion like the one now brightening the...