Today I was reading about decimals and fractions during my commercial break and realized how ‘stale’ I had become mathematically. I’ve never been one gifted at numerals but I know how to count my money. I am actually so bad at numbers I can only count beyond 100 in my father tongue. Knowing my limitations, I surround myself with calculators and converters while I restrict my knowledge to text.
I am reading that ‘fractions and decimals represent the same things: numbers that are not whole numbers.’ Now what’s that? Isn’t it like calling babies people but not whole people?
Anyhow, poetry saves the day. I’ve only come to read about fractions because a friend of mine asked me to write him a poem and the first line that flashed through my mind was: ‘we are not dealing with fractions.’ Fractions have their place in the classroom just like the poem I’ve written here for my friend has its context in a place called elsewhere.
We are not dealing with fractions
We left fractions in the classroom
But not the poem
We started out halves, then wholes
Now we are even
But not fractional
We left fractions behind
When the poem found us the denominator
Designating decimals to determine
Each exponential expression
We’ve solved the equation and
Come to the value of variables
Separated by an equal sign:
Practical math like counting
A-one, a-two, a-three, a-four
Like converting dollars into shillings
Pounds into francs
Consumer math—simple interest
Unit price with or without tax