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Broken Symmetry

Jack Ridl

Publication Year: 2006

Broken Symmetry is a collection drawn from the experiences of daily life and organized through the context of mathematics. Poet Jack Ridl uses remarkably clear and precise language to express a singular awareness of the world around us. Some of the poems in this volume deal with the universal human experience of loss, others discover a fresh perspective on what is easily overlooked, and many seek the goodness and joy that remain in a challenging world. Poems are grouped into chapters by mathematical themes, suggesting a commonality in these two separate worlds that is often overlooked. The straightforward language and universal subject matter make Broken Symmetry a profound collection of poetry that will appeal to readers of all backgrounds.

Published by: Wayne State University Press

Cover

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Contents

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Broken Symmetry

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pp. 1-2

I. Fractals

The History of the Pencil

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pp. 5-7

This Is Another Reason to Write a Poem

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pp. 8-9

Against Elegies

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pp. 10-10

Rainbow

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pp. 11-12

Framing the Morning

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pp. 13-13

After Reading Dom John Chapman, Benedictine Abbot

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pp. 14-15

Learning from Old Houses

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pp. 16-17

Last Chores of Fall

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pp. 18-19

Fractals

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pp. 20-21

Fragments from the Early Morning

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pp. 22-22

The Last Thing

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pp. 23-23

This Was My Real Life

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pp. 24-25

Waiting with William Stafford in an Oregon Airport

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pp. 26-27

Toys in the Attic

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pp. 28-29

St. Francis in Disney World

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pp. 30-30

The Crank Collector

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pp. 31-32

That’s Enough

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pp. 33-33

The Mail Carrier

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pp. 34-35

Tinnitus

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pp. 36-37

Out in the Fields with the Dogs a Week before Christmas

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pp. 38-39

The Materialism of Angels

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pp. 40-42

II. Quantum Theory

I Am Wearing Your Shirt

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pp. 44-47

Worn Morning

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pp. 48-49

When I Was Conceived

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pp. 50-51

What Then

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pp. 52-53

Forgetting How to Sleep

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pp. 54-55

The Remote

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pp. 56-58

The Ace of Spades

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pp. 59-59

Sorting through the Records

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pp. 60-61

February Is No Month to Move

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pp. 62-62

During the Last Two Weeks of His Life, He Wrote Only the Last Lines of Poems

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pp. 63-64

Waking Up in a Cold Sweat

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pp. 65-66

Hands

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pp. 67-68

Tabula Rasa

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pp. 69-70

The Salt and Pepper Collector

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pp. 71-72

The Sculptor of TV

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pp. 73-73

The Time between Mornings

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pp. 74-74

Traveling Back

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pp. 75-75

Selling the House

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pp. 76-77

Evensong

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pp. 78-78

Still Here

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pp. 79-80

III. Differential Equations

Aubade for This Morning

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pp. 83-83

On Our Dog’s Birthday

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pp. 84-85

Flying in over Key West

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pp. 86-86

Divine Women: The Woodblocks of Utamaro

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pp. 87-87

The Rain on the Burren

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pp. 88-91

Walking the Creek with Dogs

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pp. 92-93

Setting out the Puzzle Pieces

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pp. 94-95

The Gardeners

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pp. 96-96

My Father Gardening in Heaven

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pp. 97-97

Raking Leaves with the Gods in July

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pp. 98-99

A Few Days before Another Memorial Day Weekend

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pp. 100-101

Knowing Now You’ll Never Be a Clown

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pp. 102-103

Repairing the House

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pp. 104-105

Sisley’s “Snow at Louveciennes”

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pp. 106-106

Instead of Vacationing in Maine

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pp. 107-108

The Comforting

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pp. 109-109

The Drywallers Listen to Sinatra while They Work

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pp. 110-111

What We Do

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pp. 112-112

Waiting on the Beatitudes

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pp. 113-113

The Man Who Wanted to Change the World

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pp. 114-115

Burying the Poems

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pp. 116-116

Keeping On

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pp. 117-117

Living in the Twenty-First Century

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pp. 118-118

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Acknowledgments

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pp. 119-120

Special thanks to Myra Kohsel for her patience and help in the assembly of the manuscript. The author is grateful for his students and to Hope College for support, without which the completion of many of these poems would have been much more difficult.

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Credits

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pp. 121-122

Several of these poems appeared, some in a different form, in the following journals. I am grateful to the editors and staffs of each: ...


E-ISBN-13: 9780814335208
Print-ISBN-13: 9780814333228

Page Count: 136
Publication Year: 2006

OCLC Number: 755620321
MUSE Marc Record: Download for Broken Symmetry