Poems by Arthur J. Stewart
“Science is like a fine Swiss cheese,” he says. From a quirky, down-to-earth, hard-work beginning to a serene, humble end, in Elements of Chance scientist-poet Art Stewart explores the principle of cause and effect, a cornerstone of science. He offers facts—but not just the facts. Come along! In these poems you are invited to appreciate both the facts and the connections and spaces between the facts.
“A moving synthesis of poetry, biology, science, and life. The deep beauty and excitement of the natural living world, so fresh in the original writings of Loren Eiseley and Lewis Thomas, is born again in these remarkable poems. Read them and let them carry you into the beauty and mystery that is nature.” – Allan Combs, Professor and Director, California Institute for Consciousness Studies, The California Institute of Integral Studies, author of Thomas Berry Dreamer of the Earth, The Radiance of Being, and more
“A beautiful new way to illustrate the oneness of art and science. Arthur Stewart’s poetry is a pleasure walk through the garden that empowers us—balance, synchronicity, organization, animals, paintings, technology, books, and the very special, the Monet. This book is strongly recommended to all students of science.” – Adrian Bejan, J.A. Jones Professor of Mechanical Engineering, Duke University, author of The Physics of Life: The Evolution of Everything
“Things seem not to end in these poems. We get a picture of a mind considering its own mortality, yes—including a tooth filling or the evasive moves of a lizard—but it’s a lyrical reflection and in “Bunny Hour” he catalogues a kind of contentment Coleridge expresses in “Frost at Midnight.” The intimacy here, the changing focus of inward and outward eye, reveal a poet in full control of his poetic materials and confident in a worldview he invites us to enjoy with him.” – Robert Chianese, Professor, columnist for American Scientist and author of Illuminations: Poems Inspired by Science
“Ever the limnologist, Stewart’s world is the world of water. His poems grounded. His hands wet. Whether he is driving, slow rowing, data gathering or gazing, water images pervade—ripples, eddies, gyres, water lilies, the “dark air-water interface” and the Sargasso Sea. As Stewart faces uncertainty, causality and chance, he never loses his humanity or his sense of humor.” – Nancy Gorrell, author of Writing Poetry through the Eyes of Science: A Teacher’s Guide to Scientific Literacy and Poetic Response
Elements of Chance
Arthur Stewart was born in Michigan City, Indiana, and lived initially in what is now the Indiana Dunes National Park. He spent time in Arizona, where he studied biology and chemistry at Northern Arizona University. After two years in the Peace Corps, he then earned his PhD in aquatic ecology at Michigan State University. His postdoctoral research was done at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), where his research focused on the toxicity of coal oil and shale oil. Then he taught and did stream ecology studies at the University of Oklahoma before returning to ORNL, where he worked as an ecotoxicologist, group leader and senior scientist for seventeen years. To pursue his developing interests in improving science education, Art earned a MS Ed at the University of Tennessee – Knoxville, and became a project manager for Oak Ridge Associated Universities (ORAU). Within ORAU, he manages various science education and workforce development programs. He lives in Lenoir City, not far from the hubbub of Knoxville, Tennessee and writes whenever possible.