Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Problems with no solutions

     The syllable-square stanza is a poetic form I often turn to when scientific terminology gives me little hope of matching traditional patterns of rhyme or rhythm -- counting syllables gives discipline and invention to my word choices, and these are for me essential in writing poetry.
     As a grandparent of school-age children  I am deeply worried about the world they are inheriting.  I want it to offer a healthy environment and safety with vast opportunities for women as well as men.  And my own writing often supports these views.   I encourage readers to use the blog SEARCH to find an assortment of poems on a theme -- such as "girl" or "environment" or  . . . For example, here is a link to postings that include the word opportunity.  Scrolling through that list leads to this posting of Eavan Boland's poem, "Code," which honors Grace Murray Hopper.
     And here is my small, worried square:     

          Square worries

          Unless miracles give
          our earth new resources
          that prove unlimited,
          unchecked population
          growth and climate change are
          problems with no solutions.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Counting toward Christmas . . .

     Like my grandchildren, I am counting the days until Christmas -- enjoying holiday lights that break the winter darkness and looking forward to family gatherings.  Below I repeat a growing snowball poem that I first posted at the Christmas season in 2012.

*
o n
t o p
g i v e
l i g h t
f r e e l y
f o r e v e r
a b u n d a n t
b r i l l i a n t
e v e r y w h e r e
LOVE MATH!

Holiday greetings and good wishes to ALL!

Continuing in the holiday spirit, here (repeated from 2010 posting) is a Christmas verse that celebrates pi (and helps us to remember its digits): 

Monday, December 18, 2017

It's time to correct our answers!

Verses with Two Voices
by JoAnne Growney
Questions                                                           Answers

Why doesn't the teacher notice
my hand is raised?
I'm waiting for all the boys,
so eager to speak, to finish ...
Why did he put my solution
at the bottom of the pile?
You are a girl .... It is best
for me to read the good papers first.
Have you had time to review
my proof of the theorem?
No, dear!
You are pregnant
and nothing will come of it ....
If you find moments between household and mothering,
pick up a pen and write a little rhyme.
Girls can do poems.

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Visual poetry -- schemes with squares

Thanks to math teacher Sara Katz (at Manhattan's Essex Street Academy) 
and the Journal of Humanistic Mathematics for today's poem.

Monday, December 11, 2017

SPLIT THIS ROCK -- Poetry that takes a stand!

For a poetry conference about 
POETRY THAT MATTERS
Information about the festival and how to register available here.

One of the most vital and persistent forces behind Split This Rock , an organization of socially engaged writers, has been Washington DC poet Sarah Browning -- THANK YOU, SARAH.  Here is one of Sarah's poems that presents some of the awful arithmetic of WAR.

Headline: Six Killed in Raid       by Sarah Browning

          Six American soldiers and an Iraqi interpreter killed 
          in booby trapped house. 
                 -- Fourth paragraph of Washington Post story 

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Math-Poetry from YouTube

     Using "mathematics" as a search term at YouTube.com leads to a huge number of interesting results -- and some of them are poems.  For example:

Dallas Slam Poet Alexandra Marie 
Performance poet Dan Simpson from Salford, UK 
gives us "Applied Mathematics".

     Here next, in contrast to the BIG poems on YouTube, is a small mathy poem by Howard Nemerov (found here, along with other tiny Nemerov poems).  Thanks, Francisco, for alerting me to this treasure.

          Aesthetics     by Howard Nemerov

          The spider does geometry all night
          To take the fly, the dewdrop, and the sun’s light.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Browse previous posts -- November 2017 and prior

You're invited to:
Scroll through the titles below, browsing to find items of interest
OR 
Click on any label -- a list is found in the right-hand column below the author profile 
OR
Enter term(s) in the SEARCH box -- and find all posts containing those terms.
 For example, here is a link to the results of a SEARCH using   climate change 
And here is a link to a poem by Simon Armitage that cleans the air.

                                       2017 Posts