Ode to Code: A Geek Poem

Just think:
The twine of sine
and cosine, twang of tangents,
tangles of angles and twirls of tris,
the way each curve is wavelength,
like a sound is wavelength, light is
wavelength. A four forty’s tone
is blue, its hertz a wiggle,
wobble, flow from
high to low, a
drunken walk
the shade of skies.

Perhaps by this was Schumann
driven mad; the way the math invades,
pervades, like A four forty in his ear
for years: a cosmic radio of audio
uncaused by any known thing.
Oh, the song was blue,
but blues were
never heard.
Or always did.
Or thought he always did.

The azimuth, horizon, incidence;
The cadence, coda, recapitulation.
These are all the whirlwind tang of life:
From helices in mitochondria to lacy
fractal leaves to strings vibrating
quarks, and time we see
Here we
have the arc
of it, the seconds. Mark.

And now, we twist our code
in loops, recurse in tighter spirals, flow
through chains of consequence — input
output GIGO FILO — at play with toys
that mimic magic, reify and
retro-fy, a Bezier here,
vector there,
a wave
of bosses, twirl
Of blues, a count of lives, all binary.

Signs, sines, sprites, twines, tangents, tunes, time. In rhyme.

By Raph Koster

from https://www.raphkoster.com/2007/01/14/the-sunday-poem-ode-to-code-a-geek-poem/

Raph has a book of his poems too! https://www.raphkoster.com/games/books/sunday-poems/



This is how we know we’ve made it,
not by being in record books,
but by being dug up
and examined
by a civilisation
long after us,
who will not look
at the amalgamation
of rock, sand and coral
coated in synthetics
and see a rarity,
a novelty
a small-scale
of how we shaped the earth
in the image
of our greed.

Note: Plastiglomerate is a ‘new’ rock formed when melted plastics combine with rock, sand, coral and other debris to form a geological entity that will be embedded in the fossil record, and noted as a characteristic of the Anthropocene. For more information: http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2014/06/rocks-made-plastic-found-hawaiian-beach
Creative Commons License
Plastiglomerate by Cheyenne Alexandria Phillips is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.


Carbon comes in many forms
Hard as diamond, soft as soot
Coal or graphite when we write
And fancy fullerine to boot.

Carbon chains are straight or branched
Or closed to form a ring
Organic compounds these are called
Parts for life they bring.

Coal and oil and fuel gas
Once mined they have much worth
These reservoirs of energy
Were once alive on earth.

When carbon joins with oxygen
It’s either two or one
The double causes drinks to fizz
The single one? you’re gone.

I mean carbon dioxide’s fairly good
Most days it is our friend
But carbon monoxide’s something else
One miss can mean the end.
–by Peter Elias


Science Haiku 2

The Paleoblogger speaks:

Are those animals, maybe?
A lively debate

Where do you fit on life’s tree?
Pesky Rorschach tests

Precambrian life
Always called “enigmatic”
A truthful label


From https://palaeobabbler.wordpress.com/2018/06/07/science-haiku/

The Law of Statistics

The Law of Statistics

for Sally Clark 1964 – 2007

You, Sally Clark, solicitor,
discover your son, Christopher
dead in his Moses basket. Harry, born
a year later, dies in his bouncy chair.

Pediatrician for the Crown,
Sir Roy Meadow, tells the jury
two cot deaths in the same family
would occur only once in a century.

Odds are one in seventy-three million,
lower than the lottery, beyond all
reasonable doubt. An easy decision:
You must be guilty.

At Styal Prison, the horde screams,
Here’s the nonce! Die woman, die!
They bang on the door, clamber up,
gawp as you cringe in a holding cell.

At the second appeal, your body
is free but your mind has crumpled.
You drink until you die,
your third son, left without a mother.

I tell this story to my medical students,
show death by natural causes
was more likely than murder.


by Eveline Pye 

First published at http://www.talkingwriting.com/eveline-pye-three-poems

Eveline Pye was an operational research analyst in the Zambian Copper Industry, before lecturing in statistics at Glasgow Caledonian University for 22 years. Her statistical poetry was featured in Significance, the joint magazine of the Royal Statistical Society and the American Statistical Association in their Life in Statistics series. Her poems appear in the Bridges 2013 Poetry Anthology (in the “Enschede” section, Tesselations Publishing). A collection about Zambia, Smoke that Thunders, was published by Mariscat Press in 2015.


The polar ice-caps are melting, the mountain glaciers
Drip into rivers; all feed the ocean;
Tides ebb and flow, but every year a little bit higher.
They will drown New York, they will drown London.
And this place, where I have planted tree and built a stone
Will be under sea. The poor trees will perish,
And little fish will flicker in and out the windows. I built it well,
Thick walls and Portland cement and gray granite,
The tower at least will hold against the sea’s buffeting; it will
Geological, fossil and permanent.
What a pleasure it is to mix one’s mind with geological
Time, or with astronomical relax it.
There is nothing like astronomy to pull the stuff out of man.
His stupid dreams and red-rooster importance: let him count the

by Robinson Jeffers