Last Monday evening, I listened with pleasure to Pennsylvania (Fogelsville) poet Barbara Crooker read at Cafe Muse (with Meredith Davies Hadaway and Erin Murphy). Barbara writes fine poems -- and reads them well. Although she offered no mathematical poems that evening, hearing her reminded me to hunt for her love poem "The Irrational Numbers of Longing . . " and to offer it to you here:
The Irrational Numbers of Longing,
The Infinite Mathematics of Desire by Barbara Crooker
This day could be reduced to three elements:
green grass, blue hills, yellow fields of mustard,
solid in its planes as any late Cézanne. It makes me think
of the curves your hips and back make when you are sleeping,
the way my fingers travel the back road of your spine,
the landscape of our bodies under the quilt.
I want to relearn the language of plane geometry,
the relationship of curves in space, the friction
between positive and negative numbers, improper
fractions, your lovely smooth surface, the angle
of intersection, where we come together in the dark.
This poem comes from Crooker's collection Radiance (Word Press, 2005). Another Crooker poem -- connecting geometry and autism -- was featured on 12 January 2011.