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2011 Bridges Poetry Day

An Afternoon of Mathematical Poetry

Saturday, July 30, 5:30 - 7:00 pm
ISEC Main Auditorium

Newton's binomial is as beautiful as Venus de Milo.
What happens is that few people notice it.

-Fernando Pessoa (as Álvaro de Campos)
translated from the Portuguese by Francisco Craveiro

Coordinated by Sarah Glaz, professor of mathematics at the University of Connecticut and poet, this reading will feature poetry with strong links to mathematics.

About the Coordinator and the Invited Poets

Photo of Sarah GlazSarah Glaz is a professor of mathematics at the University of Connecticut specializing in the mathematical research area of Commutative Algebra. She also has a lifelong interest in poetry and enjoys getting involved in almost any kind of poetry related activity. Sarah translated Romanian poetry, experimented with poetry in the mathematics classroom, and coedited the poetry anthology, Strange Attractors: Poems of Love and Mathematics (AK Peters, 2008). Her poetry appeared or is forthcoming in: Ibis Review, The Humanistic Math Network Journal, Convergence, The American Mathematical Monthly, The Ghazal Page, Recursive Angel, and other periodicals. She serves on the editorial board of Journal of Mathematics and the Arts.

Photo of Emily GrosholzEmily Grosholz is the author of five books of poetry, and professor of philosophy at the Pennsylvania State University. She has been an advisory editor for the Hudson Review for twenty-five years, a member of the University of Paris Denis Diderot research group REHSEIS/SPHERE for seven years, and recently she joined the editorial advisory board of the Journal of Humanistic Mathematics. She studied mathematics at the University of Chicago, and philosophy at Yale University, so that her research focuses on the history and philosophy of mathematics. She lives with her husband and children in State College, Pennsylvania.

JoAnne GrowneyDuring her first career as a mathematics professor, JoAnne Growney began to find time for poetry and now she devotes her time to writing. Beyond presentations and publications, her activities have included translations of Romanian poets and collaborative projects with visual artists and mathematicians. JoAnne has lived mostly in Pennsylvania, but moved 6 years ago to Washington, DC where she teaches an ongoing poetry workshop for mental health clients at a Wellness and Recovery Center. Her latest poetry collection, Red Has No Reason, was published by Plain View Press in 2010. She maintains a blog: Intersections: Poetry with Mathematics at: and travels the world in search of new readers and new poems.

Photo of Amy UyematsuAmy Uyematsu is a sansei (3rd-generation Japanese American) from Los Angeles. She taught high school mathematics for over 30 years. During that time she also published 3 volumes of poetry: 30 Miles from J-Town (1992), Nights of Fire, Nights of Rain (1998), and Stone Bow Prayer (2005). Amy is the winner of the 1992 Nicholas Roerich Poetry Prize. Her work has been published in many journals and anthologies, and she is currently featured in “Poetry Outloud,” a national program to promote poetry in American high schools. Prior to teaching mathematics, Amy was active in Asian American Studies at UCLA.

Photo of Francisco José Craveiro de CarvalhoFrancisco José Craveiro de Carvalho graduated from Coimbra University, Portugal. He later wrote a Ph.D. thesis in Geometry, under the supervision of Stewart Alexander Robertson, at Southampton University, U.K. His mathematical publications include joint work with his former supervisor, Bernd Wegner and Sheila Carter. While on sabbatical at Leeds University, Francisco came across the poem "Einstein" by Katharine O'Brien. This event sparked his interest in the connection between mathematics and poetry and led to his publication, ainsÓniadefibOnacci, an anthology of O'Brien's poems translated into Portuguese. He has also translated poems by Carl Sandburg, Jane Hirshfield, Jennifer Clement, Linda Pastan, and Rita Dove, which he published as chapbooks or circulated among friends.

Photo of Saeed GhahramaniSaeed Ghahramani, a graduate of the Ph.D. program of the U.C. Berkeley's Mathematics Department, was born and raised in Iran. He immigrated to the United States 36 years ago and is currently the Dean of Arts and Sciences at Western New England University. He has published several research papers and 3 editions of a book all in areas of Probability and Stochastic Processes. In addition, he has always had a passion for poetry, and has published 16 papers analyzing the poems of Persian classical and contemporary poets. One of his major works, Mathematical Outlook in the Poetry of Hafez, has been well-received in the literary circles, both in Iran and in the United States. A few years ago, he gave a talk about that work at the Bridges Meeting in Towson, Maryland.

The Program

Reading their own poems:

Emily Grosholz
from: Café on the Rue Gay-Lussac, Reflections on the Transfinite, Ithaka, Trying to Describe the Reals in Cambridge, The Shape of Desire, In Praise of Fractals, Hourya, The Ratio of Green, Proportions of the Heart

JoAnne Growney
from: Things to Count On, My Dance Is Mathematics, A Taste of Mathematics, Fool’s Gold, Time, A Mathematician’s Nightmare, Square Poems, Conditionals

Amy Uyematsu
from: The Invention of Mathematics, Simple Division, Getting to Math Class by 7:15, Hints for Beginning Algebra Students, The Meaning of Zero: A Love Poem, Unfinished Calculations

Sarah Glaz
from: Calculus, Love Story, Late Afternoon at the Workshop on Commutative Rings, I Am a Number, Homage to Hardy, The Enigmatic Number e, 13 January 2009

Reading translated poems:

Francisco José Craveiro de Carvalho
Bilingual poetry reading: Francisco Craveiro (in Portuguese) with the other poets (in English).
from Craveiro's translations: Haiku Against Romantic Geometry (by Fernando Grade), Ghost Stories Written and Many Zeros (by Charles Simic), Alhazen of Basra (by Brian Turner), Einstein Thinks About the Daughter He Put Up for Adoption and Then Could Never Find (by Jennifer Clement), The Magic of Numbers (by Kenneth Koch), Truncated Cone (by Eugène Guillevic), and Sphericity or Ferocity (by Luiza Neto Jorge, Paulo Henriques Britto, tr.)

Saeed Ghahramani
from Iranian poems in translation: One Like No Other and Sinning (by Forugh Farrokhzād, Jascha Kessler, tr.), and Water's Footsteps (by Sohrab Sepehri, David Martin, tr.)

Open microphone reading by Bridges participants:

Rosanna Iembo, University of Calabria, Italy, with her daughter, Irene Iaccarino, violinist
“It was the year…”

Curtis Palmer, Synergetic Design Inc., Edmonton, Ab., Canada
“On the hierarchy of numerical isness”

Tatiana Bonch-Osmolovskaya, University of NSW, Australia, and Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology, Russia
“Universal gnomon,” “Knossos” and “G(M)aze”

Mike Naylor, Norges Teknisk-Naturvitenskapelige Universitet, Norway
“Decision Tree”

Henry Segerman, The University of Melbourne, Australia
“Autological Numbers”

Russell Hendel, Towson University, USA
“The Old Testament, The Book of Psalms: Psalm #1”

Jay Kappraff, New Jersey Institute of Technology, USA
“Divine Paradox” by Trudy Morse

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