“Is the moon important?”
My young son asked this at a time when he was posing other penetrating questions like “Do farts weigh anything?” and “Why are shampoo bubbles always white when the shampoo is purple or green?” I explained that the pull of the moon’s gravity affects how ocean tides rise and fall, high tide when the waves roll in to almost cover the beach, low tide when the water’s edge is farther out and we find tide pools. The tides affect many sea plants and animals, and also how fishermen navigate their boats. In those ways, yes, the moon is very important.
“So the moon makes waves,” my son responded, not as a question, but a conclusion.
I started to say, not waves—tides. But he was already walking away, looking thoughtful. Then he chuckled, “The moon doesn’t make any noise but the waves do it for him.”
I watched him go thinking, yes, some things that don’t make a lot of noise do make waves, and that’s very important.