Thursday, July 07, 2005

poem for angela

Here's a poem I wrote for a children's mathbook (yeah-me-math-kids-nada)...The book was edited by angela (who makes young writers look good!!!!)...angela also made me feel VERY special when she stopped me in the middle of the road one day and told me that she loved my writing. Only angela wasn't angela then (she was a stranger) and when a total stranger waltzes up to you and says "thank you" for something you've scribbled, you know you're in the right profession, damnit! No matter what the take home bank. So, without further ado.....



CORNELIUS ZERO BECOMES A HERO

Many a half-moons ago across Sunshine Terrain
Lived the Integer family of 3.14 Prime Lane
A decorous Kingdom of dactyls and digits
No rascals, insurgents or mischief’s or midgets
No negative dashes or frustrated fractions
No unfinished units, or wayward transactions
For the Integer clan was quite certain of one junction
That each separate member of their family held a certain function


King Cassius and Queen Carnessa, royal father and mother
Had added the sum of thousands of numbers
There was Cody and Caitlin, Colette and Christine
All shaped like the numbers ahead of sixteen
Cassandra the bore who was looked like a four
Cormac and Clinton who discretely swore
That there were no greater numbers of royal court ordinals
‘cept for oldest sib Cameron who kept stats for the Cardinals.


The King and Royal Mother were proud of their progeny
All capable of excelling in numerical homogeneity
The off-springs were excellent in deducing absolutes
Whether adding, dividing or extrapolating geometrical proofs
So proud were the parents of both children and place
They adhered to the Laws of the numerical race
Except for the youngest the sweetest and dearest
Shaped like a zero, his name was Cornelius.


Cornelius was egg-shaped, his cheeks were quite bare
He sat in the center of the number-lined Fair
To his right he saw negative digits saluting
To his left was his family all perfect, recruiting
Fellow Integers to add to the Integer chain
But Cornelius would always remain the same and the same
Stuck in the center while numbers stretched far
While Clinton and Cormac harassed and sassed, claiming
“How could you be so important if you know not what you are?”


Cornelius was sad. He knew not his function.
Queen Carnessa decided to host a family-all luncheon
She invited second cousins of triple esteem
And numerical pillars from Rome so it seemed
She sat all the numbers around a golden timetable
Clearing her throat, as if commencing a fable.
“Lend me your ears, calculators, rulers and proofs
your tip charts, your protractors, line graphs and mathematical truths


“You make fun of Cornelius, thinking his sum worthless
You scoff at his semblance and heckle his purpose
You think of him funny, deem him a heathen
While some brandish him odd, others think him of even
And while it will appall you, you’ll think it’s not true
That his total existence marks the absence of you
So I invite all my digits to squint and take a closer look
Sometimes the truth differs from the answers in the back of the book.


“For Cornelius the Zero gives birth to your shape
Your worth, merit and height, your numerical weight
Think his contour the egg from hence you all hatched from
The ongoing center of the infinite drum
The moment from when time convened there was nothing
Except for Cornelius he was there, he was something!”
Carnessa paused in her speech, she looked throughout all the legions
The Thousands, the Millions, the Billions, the seasons

Of numbers stretched far as both eyes could see
Then Carnessa turned to Cornelius and giggled with glee.
“It’s a glum paradox by not being you be
By not being you, you Cornelius, give life to me
You give breath to the shapes of every number indented
You are the greatest concept ever invented

You serve as the greatest numerical threshold
You separate the positive and chauffer the negative
You keep all the numbers in balance in check.”
Turning to her fellow Integers, the Queen adjusted her neck
“So next time please, don’t be so rash with your assumptions
For even absolute nothing creates an important function!!!”

So next time you find yourself alone or estranged
Feel free to skirt across the sunshine, to 3.14 Prime Lane
Where wise Queen Carnessa will tell you herself
That Cornelius the Zero is a concept, one cannot do without.

3 comments:

daku said...

w0w David this is really really GREAT.
i'm so impressed! (-: love it!

lindsey gail said...

where is life taking you these days?

-lins

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