Metaphorically, because math is metaphorical
and that’s all I have available now, I reach back
to my behind, call it point A and pull his hand,
call it point B, out of my 14 year old underpants.
Too often, his irrational digits, call them x’s and y’s,
plotted themselves in my lower quadrant. I was not
a Real Number to him, not real enough to balance
the equation, father daughter, more
a convenient outlier used to connect visible invisible
lines, upend vertices, split axes from bloody axes.
His engineer’s slide rule can’t calculate the loss
or comprehend the nonlinear distance traveled
to land this steely edge on the back of his hand.
Mary Panke is an emerging poet and Pushcart Prize nominee with work published or forthcoming in Word Fountain, Ekphrastic Review and Whale Road Review. She lives near Hartford, Connecticut with her three favorite people.