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pi poems

The following is from a series of Pi Poems, or Cadae—the alphabetical equivalent of the first five digits of Pi (3.1415).

Pi is a transcendental number that is the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter approximately equal to 3.1415926535897.

In poetry, it has been used as the basis for a syllabic form that obeys the following distribution of syllables and stanza lengths, resulting (by line length) in a kind of sonnet:

xxx __________(3)
x ____________(1)___________ } 3
xxxx _________(4)

x ____________(1)___________ } 1

xxxxx ________(5)
xxxxxxxxx ____(9)
xx ___________(2)___________ } 4
xxxxxx _______(6)

xxxxx ________(5)___________ } 1

xxx __________(3)
xxxxx ________(5)
xxxxxxxx _____(8)___________ } 5
xxxxxxxxx ____(9)
xxxxxxx ______(7)


from Cadae: The Pi Poems


The music
for a moment


when we began
to savor in its absence silence—
again, maybe a bit

louder than before

or maybe
we only heard it
as such, a sudden intrusion
we had previously not noticed
and this is what disturbed us.


No matter
the city gays


confess their scene is
a sad huddle of hopeless bottoms
each one
wishing for some dream top

to plough him senseless—

an Eden
understood only
by those first barred who with an air
of almost tragic boredom insist
their loss is epidemic.


body you would


to fuck then try to
find this body somewhere in the world
and while
you look and encounter

as you are bound to

one disappointment
after another imagine
just how thin and stripped of incident
your life would be otherwise

Tony Leuzzi is a writer and teacher living in Rochester, NY. His second book of poems, Radiant Losses, won the New Sins Editors’ Prize. In November 2012, BOA Editions will release Passwords Primeval, a book of interviews with twenty American poets.