…rcises is not to produce classical, traditional short stories. The combination of maths and writing forces pupils to think about the craft in different ways, to abandon their comfort zones and embrace new and experimental techniques. Even if the completed stories are entirely unusual or …
I love this concept, Alan. I imagine some other common poetic forms with strict rhyme or syllable structures — like the limerick, haiku, tetractys — would also fit into the Oulipo curriculum.
I have been a math-science guy for much of my education and career. Lately I’ve gotten into composing poetry, both originals and translations, and the reasons I enjoy it are very much what you describe here.
For me, poetry is a creative outlet but also an engineering optimization problem — I love the challenge of trying to optimize along the dimensions of rhyme, meter, meaning, while at the same time being as concise and economical with my words as possible.