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Professor Fanning once told me to keep math out of poetry, “just forget the numbers.” A few weeks ago, though, I sat through an entire trig class where I understood nada. It was the first time an entire hour went by and I understood NADA. Of course, that inspired me to compose a poem.



There I sat in trigonometry class,
strings of question marks growing
out of my ears, like roots gone wild;
the teacher’s Charlie Brown phonics
incapable and unwilling
to find a home in my mind.



This morning I wrote another one about the long hours I spend doing homework while I’d much rather sit down with The Metamorphoses of Ovid.



The Calculator Talks

Tick tick tick clack pat

Syntax Error.

Tick tick clack pat tick.

MathXL flashes a red box and explains what I already know.

The example provides little comfort,

as though the program has given up

on me. They want me to leave as much as I want to read.

Clack pat tick tick tick.

Well done! One problem completed after ten minutes.

Eleven problems to go.

I got eleven problems,

and the stories for my English class isn’t one.

Click tick tick clack pat.

My calculator laughs.