Friday, November 21, 2014

The Math Lady Sings

     One of my daily emails results from a Google Alert -- which I have set up to let me know of new web-postings (or old information newly accessed) that contain the terms "mathematics" and "poetry." (Another online delight comes when I Google "mathematics poetry" (or "math poetry") and browse the images that occur at the top of the list that Google offers.  What fun!)
     It is through a Google Alert notification that I learned of the poetry book It Ain't Over Till the Math Lady Sings by Michelle Whitehurst Goosby (Trafford, 2014).  This Math Lady was the subject of an article by Jennifer Calhoun in the Dotham Eagle (Dotham, AL)  -- and Calhoun put me in in touch with the poet who graciously offered permission for me to present one of her poems here.  Goosby is a teacher and the poem poses a number puzzle for readers to solve.

Five Naturals
Consecutively Odd  
by Michelle Whitehurst Goosby

Five naturals, consecutively odd
Whose sum is the product of two primes
The total is also coincidentally construed
As half the amount of thirteen ten times. 
There is one series of naturals
That have this claim to fame.
A composite and prime combo,
This natural series, can you name?
And my friend if you would be so kind
That is, if you would not mind,
Would you devote some precious time
To tell me the sum's two factors prime?

Another item that came to me via a Google Alert is the information that Hedy Lamarr was a pioneer in the development of electronic communication.  A trailblazing inventor as well as an actress.

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