“The Non-Euclidean Universe” by Anna M. Evans

Anna M. Evans


A line that looks dead straight can be an arc
like the horizon when you’re out at sea.
True distance is deceptive: in the dark

it can’t be measured. Yes, you made a mark
or two, in fact, but you can barely see.
A line that should be straight becomes an arc,

the path that’s traveled by a welder’s spark
when danger’s just a matter of degree.
Since distance can’t be measured in the dark

most people turn the light on. And the stark
divisions blind them with geometry.
A line that isn’t straight is called an arc—

no! Think outside the box! Perhaps a quark
moves like a knight in chess, a hop-two-three.
(True distance is deceptive.) In the dark

all rules break down completely. What a lark!
The future’s coming at you in 4D.
A line that should be straight looks like an arc.
True distance can deceive you in the dark.

from Rattle #49, Fall 2015
Tribute to Scientists


Anna M. Evans: “A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away (known as England), I acquired a master’s in chemical engineering. I have spent the last 25 years trying to escape it, moving continents and gaining a further master’s in creative writing, but it still resurfaces thematically in my poems. It is also arguably one of the reasons I mainly write in form (number patterns!) and is definitely why I am currently teaching a quirky undergraduate course entitled ‘Poetry & Math.’” (website)

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