Thursday, May 4, 2023

Poetry and Mathematics are NOT Opposites

     Recently I found online -- at the Spectrum Magazine website -- a collection of poems by Florida poet Phillip Whidden.  One of these poems is entitled "Mathematics" -- and I offer its thoughtful and thought-provoking opening lines here. 

from   MATHEMATICS     by Phillip Whidden

        Mathematics is not the prose part of the mind, logical, 
                as in meaning the opposite of poetry,
        Not just set out in indented paragraphs of abstraction.
        This is a city where the streets are innocent of collisions,
        Where the options are always 0/1,
        Are right, left, straight,
        Though the results can rise
        Out in a gyring arc from a heliport,
        Up in a sweep from the long rectangle of the airport runway,
        Ocean liners pulling away in parabolas from straight-edged docks
        And nothing ever in reverse.
                 . . . . 

The rest of "Mathematics" and four other poems by Widden -- including "Super Binomial Byronic Poets" (which also has a bit of math) -- are available here

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