instagram pinterest linkedin facebook twitter goodreads

Blog

Math and Poetry?

A former teacher, and fellow writer, put the thought into my head that math and poetry are related. It's something that I never thought of, but what she said kind of makes sense.

Math is a science. It gets to the point, or the answer, using the shortest route to get there. When doing a math problem every step counts, or you end up with the wrong answer.
Poetry gets to the heart of things, using the shortest route, with meaningful words, without explanations. In poetry, every word must count.

There is a pattern to math, just as there is in poetry. The pattern of a poem creates its rhythm.

My friend said that she feels great mathematicians worship simplicity. They want to say what needs to be said in as few words as possible. I think that's what we do when we write for children. Not only poetry, but also picture books.

So my question now is, how many poets out there are math-minded? If you write simple poetry for children, do you also like math? In my case, I've always liked math and was fairly good at it. I also like puzzles--cryptoquotes, crosswords, sudoku.

And from the other perspective, here's to all the mathematicians out there who like to read poetry!

Thanks for the thought, Cheryl.
Be the first to comment