I stand at the seashore, alone, and start to think. There are the rushing waves . . . mountains of molecules, each stupidly minding its own business . . . trillions apart . . . yet forming white surf in unison.
Ages on ages . . . before any eyes could see . . . year after year . . . thunderously pounding the shore as now. For whom, for what? . . . on a dead planet, with no life to entertain.
Never at rest . . . tortured by energy . . . wasted prodigiously by the sun . . . poured into space. A mite makes the sea roar.
Deep in the sea, all molecules repeat the patterns of one another till complex new ones are formed. They make others like themselves . . . and a new dance starts.
Growing in size and complexity . . . living things, masses of atoms, DNA, protein . . . dancing a pattern ever more intricate.
Out of the cradle onto the dry land . . . here it is standing . . . atoms with consciousness . . . matter with curiosity.
Stands at the sea . . . wonders at wondering . . . I . . . a universe of atoms . . . an atom in the universe.
— The Pleasure of Finding Things Out: The Best Short Works of Richard P. Feynman