you say eight is the magic number,
all the atoms crave its perfection
(was i born to study science,
the subject i so hated in school?)

i cried when i knew i wouldn’t be
a part of your class
(i begged her to change my schedule
and she made a small compromise)

i can’t say what it is
because it is too subtle to explain
(his words a blur of frustration
never trapped for them to see)

so the opposite of the smooth experience
that our students see every day
(a perfect partnership that takes
them, all of them, to a deeper understanding)

you say eight is the magic number–
the atoms exchange electrons
(to balance each other out,
to coexist in perfect harmony)

you see in me what i see in you
and it is not what anyone else sees
(and wrapped up in infinitesimal 8
the science becomes beautiful to me)

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