Poetry / Infinities


Publisher:
Cedar Hill Publications

Publication date:
2002

1-891812-31-9
paper, 86 pages, $15.00

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“Like any true poet, Lucille Lang Day scans the outer world of jungles and stars for clues to the inner universe of feeling and thought. She does this by exploring scientific language and ideas for hints—metaphors, facts, images—that might reveal something about the meaning of personal experience.  Her poems are eloquent, imaginative, and informed by a knowledge of contemporary science. The creation she honors is God’s, the vast ineffable realm of macro-and-microscopic nature. By doing this she honors as well the persistent, equally ineffable mystery of the human realm.”
— Kurt Brown

“I like so many of the poems in Infinities, their themes, their tone and craft. I like the risks Lucille Lang Day takes in addressing difficult subjects. She handles these subjects and their vocabularies deftly and with wit and ease. We need voices like hers exploring all the visions contained in our contemporary cosmology and what those visions imply about being human.”
— Pattiann Rogers

“The description of ‘Nature’ has always been an important aspect of California writing. In this brilliant book, Lucille Lang Day has found an entirely new way to do it. Her explorations of both human and nonhuman perspectives are impeccably and superbly alive. Here, even a tumor speaks: ‘I begin to sing. I am/a tiny siren/calling the capillaries. . .'”
— Jack Foley

“Lucille Lang Day’s new book, Infinities, marks a dramatic change and expansion in her poetry—from the familiar microcosms of personal relationships to the strange and wonderful macrocosms of the universe. She explores scientific concepts from astrophysics to marine biology with erudite care but always infuses the poems with tangible emotion.”
— Dana Gioia

Infinities

The infinitesimal infinity dances—
a speck of force
at the edge of a petal, where
electrons are leprechauns
that always slip away
and have no quarks.

The hand-sized infinity opens—
an ivory rose
unfolding in the fifth
through tenth dimensions.

I keep it in a vase
on a lace-covered table
in the family-sized infinity
whose rooms collect dust
galaxies composed
of mites and minute
particles of skin.

Set theory says there is
an infinite number
of infinities of different sizes,
but as each leaf curls
and one by one
the petals let go,
I wonder if omega
might equal one
and the stars might slow
and dim like fireflies.

No! Let the universe
shrink to a pinhead,
then explode in flames
where possibilities bloom
endlessly again
among blue-striped roses
in new time and space.

Lucille Lang Day


From Infinities