The Story of the Tangram Square

This is the story
of the tangram square
I believe it’s true
though I wasn’t there

A small Chinese boy
was extremely bored
So he took a plank
and his father’s sword

And he made a square
and split it in seven
He did it all morning
from eight to eleven

And he spent the day
playing with the pieces
Making people, things
and animal species

First he made the girl
special to his heart
A school friend of his
beautiful and smart

Then he made the golden
crown of the czar
Then he made the Moon
and he made a star

Then he made a house
and he made a bark
And he made a whale
and he made a shark

In the end he made
a grumpy man’s head
Then his mother called:
“It is time for bed!”

Many years have passed
since that autumn day
But his puzzle has
survived till today

It has spread across
the whole world, I swear
And this is the story
of the tangram square


Published in SYMmetryplus in 2014
© The Mathematical Association