Peter Hughes


1 + 1 ≠ 2

So simple so it seems a first mental challenge for every child
since three thousand years before Jesus
is one of numerical invention.
Recite, cantor, commit to memory do each that thing arithmetic,
1 + 1 = 2 ; so incorrect in its foundation
maddening as a reddened sore created by a tick

The learned teacher and the child knows well
the arithmetic is wrong even the cave people suspected such
in artifacts of fossils clearly shown
are simple marks, one, one, one on fragments made of bone.

But the pupil looks doubting to teacher
knowing in her heart it cannot be true
and questions the teacher, who stumbles
but to write a note, home to parent
and that singular event sends the child askew

Sense perfection to the math and the child
that one plus one has never equaled two
Waits for Mathematica Principia to become aware
for in all those years in frustration
and all those degreed
honors are said and done
one plus one equals
one plus




physicists and chemists seem to come and go
so do their theories,
warranted theories, unwanted theories,
unpopular theories, proven theories,
a gimmish of theories, unproven theories,
a whirlwind of theoretical pruf-te’chal
some theories
that make no sense at all
surrounding themselves with reams of maths and
piles of logs and blogs
but no better scientists make than
frogs and dogs

thermodynamics so complicated a thing
derived with deltas, summations and spense
Energy is equal to heat Q minus work W
makes us all total sense

as Q is absorbed in relativistic time,
W is only a slow roll over
for any beagle glowing by the warm camp stove

incubated, deep in the swamp and no W
heartbeat to slow
glycoprotein antifreeze through cold veination
the deep winter frog’s
time contraction of hibernation

instantaneous motion was never Newton’s plan
fast is the swipe
off of the unguarded plate
a piece of savory ham
even faster is the fly on the tongue
of the frog

Cosmology and the Universe
we all hold supreme in studious effort
to understand the equations of our
particles elementary
for only 4000 years peered toward the sky
all the time knowing we are star dust on fly
not knowing the time
not listening why

Huddled for 200 years listening intent
radio signals sent deep into space
listening for just a few repeated notes
repeated to the tune of π,
the square root of two,
or root minus one
tossed about in a sea of Dark Energy and Mass
not knowing what was being said
in the garble of electromagnetic origin

But the dog has known many glow lit nights,
howling at the Moon
and for eons every evening the frog
has known its song

It makes one wonder
who may have truly listened
and has been listening
even longer

Copyright © 2013 Peter Hughes

Peter E. Hughes is a Clinical Laboratory Biochemist, Ph.D., North Carolina State University.  

He is a NASA Scholar and Senior Scientist.  He researches and writes for the Mad Scientists as a representative of the United States and is an editor of Biochemistry and Medicine for the Encyclopedia of Earth. Major interests are photography, writing about life experiences, electronics and Radio Astronomy of Close Space Events.

He writes short stories, poetry and humor.