A Very Nerdy Love Poem

As promised, I have some poems from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s lit magazine Rune to share with you. This first one is a love poem written by Allan Ko, who runs one of several student blogs featured on the MIT Admissions website. Allan’s blog is really awesome; it gives some cool insights into what it’s like to be an aerospace engineering undergrad at MIT, a temporary Seattle-ite while interning at Amazon, an amateur playwright, and more. You should check it out.

When I came across his poem in the current issue of Rune, I couldn’t wait to post it, because there’s perhaps nothing I appreciate more than a well-executed nerdy love poem. Big thanks to Allan for letting me share it!

On Loving an Engineer
By Allan Ko

On our first date, we saw a movie.

On our second, dinner—at the student center.

On our third date she brought me to a
       hackathon, and I spent three hours
       pushing pins into other pins,

       following a diagram littered with lines
       and boxes like it was the first draft of
       a LEGO construction book,

       while she waited in line for the 3D printers.

Sometimes she uses words I’m not sure are English.

I bring her coffee and she kisses me distractedly—
I have filled sketchbooks with portraits of her working
       early mornings as I lounge insomniatic in bed, and

When I bring her flowers, she sets aside exactly six
       to bring to lab:
              one for every hour between midnight and sunrise,
              one for every hour I sleep alone on her nocturnal days,
              one for every kiss she’s promised for the morning.

Her kisses taste like atomic fire,
       laser light illuminating, and they fill
       with the heat of quicksilver solder
       flowing molten.

On our first date we saw a movie—
       Gravity, with Sandra Bullock and George Clooney,

And when afterwards she said
       the physics was very good, I laughed

Because usually love is about chemistry, but
       I’m just falling

           and falling

           and falling


This poem was used with the author’s permission. “On Loving an Engineer” originally appeared in Issue 35 of MIT’s literary magazine Rune.


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