Wednesday, July 15, 2020

A thoughtful Fibonacci poem

     An email message from Washington, DC poet and blogger Karren Alenier alerted me to this mathy Fibonacci poem found online in the Summer 2020 Issue (#36) of The Fib Review.  The poet., Roberto Christiano, has given me permission to offer it to you here.

the irrational   by Roberto Christiano

c'est moi?
a number that
cannot be expressed by the
ratio of two integers / and what's an integer?  

dictionary dot com says mathematically it's one of the positive or negative numbers
I suppose I'm an irrational number / one fixed in the limbo between positive and

          negative like Hamlet between heaven and earth
can we all be reduced by how much we go into one another?
the fallacy of the ratio
not everything can
explain the

Although Christiano's poem uses a bit of poetic license when it speaks of the location of irrational numbers between positive and negative, its phrases are thought-provoking as his word-counts follow the Fibonacci numbers -- 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21  . . . and then backward to 1, 1. The poet is interested in form and offered this comment:         When asked why I would want to write in a restrictive form, I say because it's challenging and often seems impossible--like walking across Niagara Falls on a tightrope; it's been done but it's dangerous. There's also an odd mental connection between constraint and freedom. I don't know why but it's there. As Stanislavski would say--only at a masked ball does one dare to speak the truth.

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