Poem: ‘All is Number’ | Cassandra Voices

Poem: ‘All is Number’


All is Number

If the late afternoon light is beautiful
but God’s not behind it
then my mind is just classifying;

if the late afternoon light is beautiful
and God designed it,
it’s a blessing and a deep unknowable well:

light seems a word beyond metaphor —
a wave and a particle
neither wave nor particle,

energy cast out of the sun,
passed through a vacuum —
so vast in its power

the plump earth greens luminous
and humans agree terms to barter for
what’s there which lies shimmering
and only calculable.


About Author

Nicholas Battey is retired and lives and gardens in West Devon. He was previously Professor of Plant Development at the University of Reading where he wrote research papers, co-edited and contributed to the popular science books 30 Second Biology and 30 Second Evolution, and co-wrote the textbook Biological Diversity: Exploiters and Exploited. He self-published a collection of his poems in 2020 and his music can be found on his website.

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