Arthur Sze

Venn Diagrams
February 21, 2024 Sze Arthur

Venn Diagrams


X-rays, muons, ultraviolet radiation—
X-rays can diagnose fractures
in the skull; muons can map spaces
inside the pyramids at Giza;
ultraviolet radiation kills bacteria
in well water—in a Venn diagram,
circles overlap. An array of sharpened
pencils in a cup; cars parked
at a casino; along a trail, small
puffballs—these clusters manifest
chance; and, pondering three
who furthered you on your way,
you grieve, yearn, hope, make lines
against a void, the void, in an at-one go.

Arthur Sze’s eleventh book of poetry, The Glass Constellation: New and Collected Poems (Copper Canyon, 2021)
received a 2024 National Book Foundation Science + Literature Award. His new book, The Silk Dragon II: Translations
of Chinese Poetry
, is forthcoming from Copper Canyon in April.