Just for fun... if I had to haul out one of my poems to represent me, this would probably be the one. (Is that kind of like a parent admitting they like one of their children best?) It also got me the nicest acceptance letter I've ever gotten, so I'd probably have a soft spot for it for that reason alone.
Let X Equal . . .
Let the woman wake
from sleep, as she does each morning
of her life. Let her arm
reach out, drowsy, and brush
the bedroom curtains aside,
let her watch for five whole minutes
the cat washing herself
on the front lawn, the bird
pecking madly at damp earth,
the neighbor clutching the front of her robe
as she steps out the door
and stoops for her morning paper.
Let the sunlight be quiet
and warm across the lawn. Let the grass
be succulent and green.
Let the day unfold like a perfect
equation, every moment growing
toward some simple answer,
some singular integer.
Let the woman stand for the thesis,
the given, all the formulas that build
a body of knowledge. Let her waking
be the question, and the window
equal some visible understanding, the work
she is asked to show. Let the neighbor
and the curtains be variables, the light
and the lawn be the sum
of each other, the pure reciprocity of morning.
Let the woman's hand, opening
curtains, and the woman, rising,
be a new theorem, solid and given,
the beginning of an elegant
and irrefutable proof.
published in Northwest Review, 1992
and in Celebrating Seventy, compiled by Jenny Kander (Lexington, KY: Wind, 2003)