> classes > experimental writing, spring 2014

10^5 Shades of MIT

by Shanasia Sylman

100,000 Permutations of the MIT Experience

Inspired by Raymond Queneau's "Hundred Thousand Billion Poems", I have created a collection of ten limericks that each describe MIT and experiences unique to the Institute. Constrained by the AABBA rhyme scheme, an "IHTFP" acrostic and the rhyming families of 'class' and 'care', I humorously depict common trials and tribulations of the MIT student in the voice of a female student who escapes to the bathroom to create such prose. Topics include panicking about a test, going to fraternity parties and traversing campus in winter. Each line is written on a slit of paper connected to the overall chapbook binding, allowing the reader to create 'new limericks' with the turn of each line. The permutational nature speaks to the technical background of MIT as well as how the Institute is composed of and shaped by many different people and experiences.

The turn of each strip tells a different story.

Thank You for Reading