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Poetry

Achilles and the Tortoise

by Peter Mullen

I entered in and took my place
Ready to cheer the tortoise race.
My drachma says that number nine
Is first to cross the winning line.
At last they’re off and in slow motion,
But what’s that noise and great commotion?
The door flung wide, a mighty sound
Hilarity all round the ground:
Achilles is entering the chase,
Which surely will increase the pace!
My tortoise nine is in the lead,
But great Achilles has the speed
To overtake him, take the cup
But first he has to catch him up:
Impossible, against all clocks
Because of Zeno’s paradox.

© Rev’d Dr Peter Mullen 2020

Peter Mullen is a philosopher and Anglican priest. His last cure of souls before he retired was Rector of St Michael’s, Cornhill in the City of London.

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