‘It looks so simple from a distance’ is the title of the poem by Anne Stephenson that was chosen for Poems on the Underground in 2010, the year that celebrated 350 years of the Royal Society. I was asked for a short comment at that time that I don’t think ever appeared anywhere.
I was captured by the title which expresses a familiar experience. This is what I have felt when looking at wonderfully lit-up brain images that dimly reflect what a person in a scanner thinks or feels. Brain images are full of promise and mystery; they can indeed seem like lit-up cities at night, when seen at a great distance from a plane. Here too the lights dimly reflect what people think and feel. Continue reading A poem by Anne Stephenson touches a nerve
I am glad that poets take neuroscience as inspiration for their work. The future discovery of how the brain produces the mind is a challenge that needs to be met not just by scientists, and philosophers, but also by creative artists.