Tuesday, July 26, 2005

The Rime... Part II


The Drafts now rose upon the right:
Out on the table did it pile,
Still hid in confusion, and on the left
Went down into the file.

And the good equation still came behind,
But no sweet Classic did follow,
Nor any day for analysis or explanation
Came to the researcher's hollo!

Her labmates cry out against the ancient Researcher, for killing the Classic of paradigm shift.

And I had done an hellish thing,
And it would work 'em woe:
For all averred, I had killed the Classic
That made the understanding grow.
Ah wretch! said they, the Classic to blow,
That made the understanding grow !

But when they understood the assumptions well, they justify the same, and thus make themselves accomplices in the crime.

Nor small nor big, like Nature's own preprint,
Did gloriously rise the Draft:
Then all averred, I had killed the Classic
That brought confusions a lot.
'Twas right, said they, such Classics to blow,
That bring confusions a lot.

The nice equation continues; the thesis work enters the Land of Results, and continues to bring new results, even till it reaches the CuriousResults.

The nice equation brew explanations anew,
The results flowed free:
We were the first that ever burst
Into such data gathering spree.

The thesis work hath been suddenly bestalled.

Down fell the equation, the explanations dropt down,
'Twas sad as sad could be :
And we did speak only to break
The silence of the PC !

All in a hot and humid lab,
The bloody Draft on table,
Right up above the file did stand,
No bigger than a Fable.

Day after day, day after day,
We stuck, nor data nor experiment :
As idle as painted scholars
Upon a painted parchment.

And the CiteClassic begins to be avenged.

Results, results, every where,
And did the lab-book remain white ;
Results, results, every where,
Nor any paper to write.[NOTE]

The very vacuum did leak: O Diffpump !
That ever this should be !
Yea, slimy things did drip with oil
Upon the slimy laboratory.

About, about, in lab and on table,
The junk-files danced at night :
The data-sheet, like a witch's oils,
Burnt green, and blue and white.

An EmeritusProf had followed them; one of the invisible inhabitants of this planet, neither departed souls nor angels; Concerning whom the learned Scientist,RS Hankara, and the Platonic Nanopolitan, Abinand Pthennan, may be consulted. They are very numerous, and there are no Departments or Institute without one or more.

And some in meetings assured were
Of the EmeritusProf that plagued us sore ;
Nine months time he had followed us
From the land of NoResults and more.

And every project, through utter drought,
Was withered at the root ;
We could not speak, no more than if
We had been choked with soot.

The labmates, in their sore distress, would fain throw the whole guilt on the ancient Researcher : in sign thereof they hang the Journal of Irreproducible Results round his neck.

Ah ! well a-day ! what evil looks
Had I from all, old and young!
Instead of a medal, the Journal
About my neck was hung.

For these two lines of this stanza, I am indebted to Mr. Subhradeep Chatterjee. It was a delightful walk from the Department to the Coffee house with him and Phaniraj, in the summer of 2005, that this Poem was planned, and in part composed ( See here for Coleridge's note and attribution).


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