Photography © Karen A. Szklany


Garbh Choire Mor

Get ready for the riddles of the Sphinx—

A Scottish corrie’s where this patch of snow

Remained for centuries, though now it shrinks

Because of climate change. The riddles go:

How many politicians does it take,

Conferring, till a light-bulb moment hits?

How many more do you then need to make

One screw it in—not up? … “You can’t mean it’s

Infinity, and if it’s me you mean,”

Responded Boris Johnson, “answers are

Exactly one and zero—I’ve gone green!

My light-bulb moment means we aren’t too far

Off target!” … Did his blast of fresh hot air

Reduce the Sphinx so much, now it’s not there?


Mike Mesterton-Gibbons is a Professor Emeritus of Mathematics at Florida State University. His acrostic sonnets have appeared in Autumn Sky Poetry Daily, Better Than Starbucks, the Creativity Webzine, Current Conservation, the Ekphrastic Review, Grand Little Things, Light, Lighten Up Online, the New Verse News, Oddball Magazine, Rat’s Ass Review, the Satirist, the Washington Post and WestWard Quarterly. The inspiration for “Garbh Choire Mor” was a Guardian story, headlined “UK’s longest-lasting snow patch melts for only eighth time in 300 years.”

Karen A. Szklany was born in New York and now lives in a New England co-housing community. She is the author of several collections of poetry, gardening books and Unitarian Universalist sermons. Karen also serves as a Life Healing and Transformation Coach on the labyrinth path.