Thursday, November 3, 2011

Grip It And Rip It

I always feel that I must read 3-4 science books each year (given that my wife is a science teacher and a real brainiac).  My most recent foray into the world of the hard sciences has been Get a Grip on Physics, by John Gribbin.  In this old-style science book, Gribbin combines basic history and formulas of physics with art to make this, perhaps the most difficult of sciences, comprehensible to the average layman (like me).  But even after reading this book, I'm still in awe of the discipline of physics and the deep science of the universe.

I'm not a science writer, but I have composed my fair share of "science" poetry.  Some of these I've attached to my science fiction tales and/or have submitted outright.

Here's a portion of one poem below, entitled "Red Shift".

(And, in case you don't know what the Red Shift is, I'll try to explain:  the Red Shift refers to the spectrum of colors from deep space that scientists use to determine the distance and age of various sources of light. As radiation (light) travels through space, it shifts in color, deepening to red the longer (older) it is, much like The Doppler Effect of sound deepens from a passing train.) 

Got that?  (It's much too simple of an explanation, but here goes.)

Red Shift

Light years from earth, a boomerang
Of radiation--violets, blues--
Glows within the rim of the Big Bang.
The giant stars, like Betelgeuse

Emit a trail of gamma rays
That shift in space and time at speed
Of light.  The Doppler Effect gravitates
The purple-violet haze and bleeds

The energy to red . . .

Well, there's much more to this poem, but you get the picture (or not).  When I get this figured out, I'll call you.  Or I'll ask my wife.  She knows everything.  And red is her favorite color.

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