Size / / /

Who'll solve my problem? asks the moon
   Moving across the sky
Who'll calculate my radius
   And multiply by π?

The shining flood of light I pour
   By half a world is shared
And yet this area, figured out
   Is merely πr2

The laws of π all circles must
   Unquestioningly obey
Yet lovely as a lily, I
   Float heedless on my way

My proud contention this, which once
   The ancient Romans held:
Luna se moven -- briefly put
   The moon is self-propelled.

Night's Queen I trace a silvery
   Circumference of sky
And share my cold and regal sway
   With nobody but π.

 

Copyright © 1977 by Joan Aiken Enterprises, Ltd.;
first appeared in The Skin Spinners, published by Viking Press;
reprinted by permission of Brandt & Hochman Literary Agents, Inc.

Reader Comments


Joan Aiken is the author of over sixty books for adults and children, perhaps the best known of which are The Wolves of Willoughby Chase series. She still types all her novels on a typewriter, never having moved onto a computer. Aiken lives in Sussex, England, with her husband.

Note: This poem uses an HTML "entity" to represent the Greek letter pi. If your browser can't display that, you may be unable to see the pi. An earlier version of this page used the Symbol font, which left the pi characters looking like a letter p for people who didn't have that font installed.



Joan Aiken (1924–2004) was the author of over sixty books for adults and children, perhaps the best known of which are the Wolves of Willoughby Chase series. We published an Author Focus issue about her and her work in 2001.
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