Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Parabola

Math with Bad Drawings

with sincere apologies to Wallace Stevens,
and to all poets, everywhere

I.

All my life
I had known only lines
so when my teacher
drew a parabola
I said,
“Huh?”

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II.

I took all the numbers,
and squared them.
The big ones grew.
The little ones shrank.
The negative ones
became positive.
Opposites agreed.
It was kinda cool.

20150304071013_00002

 

III.

I watched an object falling,
tracing its arc,
the ink of time leaving curves
on the paper of space—
a perfect parabola.
(Except for air resistance.)
(NO ONE LIKES YOU, AIR RESISTANCE.)

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