Friday, October 3, 2014

End of the Month Accounting

This is just how I feel about arithmetic and balancing checkbooks and figuring out how many yoga students showed up in class this month and whether the rain drenching the front yard means I have to add more eggs to the grocery list.

Arithmetic
by Carl Sandburg

Arithmetic is where numbers fly like pigeons in and out of your head,
Arithmetic tells you how many you lose or win if you know how
many you had before you lost or won.
Arithmetic is seven eleven all good children go to heaven--or five six
bundle of sticks.
Arithmetic is numbers you squeeze from you head to your hand to
Arithmetic is where the answer is right and everything is nice
and you can look out of the window and see the blue sky--or the answer
is wrong and you have to start all over and try again and see how it comes
out this time.
If you take a number and double it and double it again and then
double it a few more times, the number gets bigger and bigger and goes
higher and higher and only arithmetic can tell you what the number is when
you decide to quit doubling.
Arithmetic is where you have to multiply--and you carry the multiplication
If you have two animal crackers, one good and one bad, and you eat one
and a striped zebra with streaks all over him eats the other, how many
animal crackers will you have if somebody offers you five six seven
and you say No no no and you say Nay nay nay and you say Nix nix nix?
If you ask you mother for one fried egg for breakfast and she gives you
two fried eggs and you eat both of them, who is better in arithmetic,

from Poetry for Young People: Carl Sandburg

Stop by Jama's Alphabet Soup for the Poetry Friday Roundup today.