Scientific American/Series 1/Volume 1/Issue 1/Attraction

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For works with similar titles, see Attraction.


Attraction is a curious power,
    That none can understand:
Its influence is every where—
    In water, air and land;
It keeps the earth compact and tight,
    As though strong bolts were through it;
And, what is more mysterious yet,
    It binds us mortals to it.

You throw a stone up in the air,
    And down it comes—ker-whack!
The centrifugal casts it up—
    The centripetal—back.
My eyes! I can't discover how
    One object 'tracts another;
Unless they love each other, like
    A sister and a brother.

I know the compass always points
    Directly at the pole;
Some say the north star causes this,
    And some say—Symm's Hole!
Prehaps it does—prehaps it don't;
    Prehaps some other cause;
Keep on prehapsing—who can solve
    Attraction's hidden laws?

A fly lights on a 'lasses cup—
    Attraction bids him woo it;
And, when he's in, attraction keeps
    The chap from paddling through it.
Attraction lures the sot to drink,
    To all his troubles drown;
But when his legs give way, he falls,
    And "traction keeps him down.

Attraction is a curious power,
    That none can understand;
Its influence is everywhere—
    In water, air and land.
It operates on every thing—
    The sea, the tides, the weather;
And sometimes draws the sexes up,
    And binds them fast together.