That the fierce storm-wind may bluster and blow,
Tearing the trees from the root-broken ground,
Or the wild sea-surf may leap and may flow
In solemn silence with never a sound.
For sound is but the vibrations of air
That strike on the drum of the living ear;
So if never a living ear is there,
There is nothing to strike and nothing to hear.
Though the vibrations move on, and live,
And thus the law of their being obey,
'Tis the ear produces the sound they give--
That's what I heard a philosopher say.
So if thunder, roll'd through quivering air,
With that awful silence reigning around,
And you or I suddenly landed there,
All Nature would break at once into sound.
It seems very strange and eerie, you know;
I don't understand how it is--do you?
But a philosopher said it, so
I really suppose that it must be true.