Since 1998, Summer BRIDGES Conferences have been held -- enthusiastic gatherings where theater and visual art and music and poetry and mathematics engage participants in lively exchange. This year's conference is July 27-31 in Enschede, the Netherlands, and mathematician-poet Sarah Glaz has organized an outstanding group of talented readers to share their poetry on Sunday, July 28. Following the featured readers will be an open reading -- and interested readers are invited to email Glaz using the address found here.
One of the scheduled readers on July 28 in Enschede is Scottish poet and statistician Eveline Pye; shown below is one of the poems she will read -- "Love of Algebra" :
Love of Algebra by Eveline Pye
She says, “You know how you get it
and then you forget it”, and I smile,
nod ― but really, I don’t ―
can’t even imagine. How does
the dancer forget dancing,
the singer forget singing? How could
I ever not know how to solve
It would be like forgetting
how to breathe or laugh or love.
You’d have to dissect my brain
scour out layer after layer of tissue
with steel wool, and even then
if you left me one tiny cell,
the knowledge would grow back,
and if you were to succeed,
to wipe out every trace,
I’d be a lost soul.
I’d never give up. I’d chew on my pencil
night and day to recapture that feeling,
that moment when I grasped the life line.
After August 1, an anthology of poems from this and previous BRIDGES conferences (collected by Editor Sarah Glaz) will be available. It will include, for example, this poem of mine, "Girl-Talk."