Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Shalizi, Shalizi, Shalizi

So, a couple of weeks ago, Cosma Shalizi, who is one of the smartest guys I know, was kind enough to link to me in a post on his blog in which he shared some found haikus that his brother had assembled from answers to science questions by 5th and 6th graders in Japan.

In response, I wanted to share this very old poem of mine. If you don't know him, Cosma writes hands-down the best statistics blog on the internet, which also includes other interesting stuff.

If you don't already read it, you should.

Here are two things you probably already know, but just in case you don't, I'll lay them out here for context.
1. The Wasteland by T. S. Eliot ends with the line Shantih shantih shantih. Eliot's own note on the line is: "Shantih. Repeated as here, a formal ending to an Upanishad. 'The Peace which passeth understanding' is a feeble translation of the conduct of this word."
2. If you repeat the name Shalizi three times, Cosma will appear in your mirror with a posse of frequentists and kick your Bayesian posterior.


The Piece Which Passeth Understanding

   There was one piece left
I left half for you, but you
   Were too full to eat

The Peas’ Switch Passeth Understanding

   A woman once had
To turn off all the lights be-
   Fore she could eat peas

The Pee Switch Passeth Understanding

   Two boys in eighth grade
Swap urinals in mid stream
   They laugh and eat lunch

The Peach-wich Passeth Understanding

   A man once ate a
Peach between two slices of
   Bread and he liked it

The P’s Which Passeth Understanding

   Three letter P’s walked
Under where I was standing
   They ate garbanzos

The Peace Witch Passeth Understanding

   A witch found a spell
For peace on earth, but she ate
   The ingredients

No comments:

Post a Comment