The reason Earth attracts much like the sun,
Is atoms sharp out from the Earth do come:
From its circumference, like bees they rise,
When from a swarm dispersed apart, each flies.
And as they wander, meet with duller forms, 5
Wherein they stick their point, then back returns.
For like a bee that’s loaden on each thigh,
Hath a great weight and cannot nimbly fly,
So when their points are loaded, heavy grow,
Can pierce no further: backward must they go. 10
And as their hives to Earth return again.
Thus by their travel, they the Earth maintain.
If that the sun so like a candle is
That all the air doth take a light from his—
Not by reflection, but by kindling all
That part, which we our hemisphere do call—
If so, the air whereon his light is cast 5
Would ne’er go out, unless that substance waste.
Or ’less the sun extinguishers should throw
Upon the air, to cause light out to go.
But sure the sun’s reflection gives the light,
For when he’s gone, to us it is dark night. 10
And why? The sun is atoms sharp entire,
Which wedged in round, do make a wheel of fire.
About this wheel continually do flow
Sharp streaming atoms, which like flame do show.
And in this flame the Earth itself doth see, 15
As in a glass, as clear as e’er may be.
But when the Earth doth turn aside its face,
It is not seen, but darkness doth take place.
Or when the moon doth come betwixt that light,
Then is the Earth shut up as in dark night. 20
All atoms sharp to every center fly,
And in the midst of th’Earth and planets lie,
And in those planets there are centers too,
Where the sharp atoms with quick motion go.
And to the center of the Earth they run, 5
There gathering close, and so become a sun.
This is the ax whereon the Earth turns round,
And gives the heat which in the Earth is found;
A world of fire: thus may we guess the sun,
If all sharp atoms to the center run. 10
For why the sun amongst the planets round,
Just as a center, in the midst is found.
And fixèd stars, which give a twinkling light
Are center-worlds of fire, which do shine bright.
The Earth, we find, is very cold and dry,
And must therefore have fire and water nigh
To wash and bathe, then dry herself without,
Else she would useless be, without all doubt.
How can we think winds come from th’Earth below,
When from the sky they down upon us blow?
If they came from the Earth, they must ascend,
And back again their strength against it bend;
They cannot freely blow, lest Earth were made 5
Like to a bowling-green, and level laid.
But there are rocks, and hills, and mountains great
Which stop their ways and make them soon retreat.
Then sure it is, the sun draws vapor out
And makes it thin, then blows it all about. 10
By heat condensed, it turneth into rain,
And by its weight falls to the Earth again.
Thus moisture and the sun do cause the winds,
And not the crudities in hollow mines.
Sometimes we find it hot, and sometimes cold,
Yet equal in degrees the sun doth hold.
And in a winter’s day more heat is found
Than summer, when the sun should parch the ground.
For if this heat doth make him gallop fast, 5
’T must ever equal be, or stay his haste.
If so, then seas which send up vapor may
His fiery courage cool in the midway.
Besides, the middle region, which is cold
And full of ice, will of his strength take hold. 10
Then ’tis not heat that makes him run so fast,
But running fast doth heat upon Earth cast,
And Earth sends vapors cold to quench his heat,
Which break his strength, and make his beams so weak.
The sun doth not to the Earth’s center go;
He cannot shoot his beams so deep and low.
For a thick wall will break his arrows small,
So that his heat can do no hurt at all.
And Earth hath arms so thick, to keep out all 5
His fiery darts which he on her lets fall.
As heat about the heart always keeps nigh,
So doth a fire about the center lie.
This heat disperses through the body round,
And when that heat is not, no life is found.
So this heat makes all things to bud and bear, 5
Although the sun’s hot beams do ne’er come there.
Yet doth the sun nourish all things without,
Though fire within the Earth gives life, no doubt.
Thus heat within begets with child the Earth,
And heat without is midwife to her birth. 10
Although the Earth to all gives form and feature,
Yet is the sun the nurse to every creature.
For none could live unless the sun give heat,
Which is to them as nourishing as meat.
Just as a child is got and born of man, 5
It must be fed, or ’twill soon die again.
Tis thought an unctuous matter comes from the sun
In streaming beams, which Earth doth feed upon,
And that the Earth by them, when they ascend,
Unto the sun a nourishment doth send.
And so each beam the sun doth make a chain, 5
Which brings down food and draws food back again.
Or we may well those beams to ships compare,
Where each is laden with the richest ware.
Each ship is fraught with heat; through air it sails
And brings this heat to th’Earth, which never fails 10
By traffic’s laws equal returns to make,
And sends instead of heat moist vapor back.
Great danger is, if ships be overfraught,
For many times they sink with their own weight:
And those gilt ships such fate do often find, 15
They sink with too much weight or split with wind.