Monday, 4 January 2016

BrainPickings post on punctuation

I had to save this post it's too good. 

A Darkly Delightful 1905 Poem Celebrating Punctuation

The peaceful land of Punctuation
is filled with tension overnight

When the stops and commas of the nation
call the semicolons “parasites”

Within the hour they form their troops,
an anti-semicolon group

The question marks avoid the scrape
(as always) and quietly escape

The semicolons’ mournful racket
is drowned out by surrounding brackets

And then the captured creature freezes
Imprisoned by parentheses

The dreaded minus sign arrives
and — slash! — ends the captives’ lives

The question marks, now homeward-bound,
pity the corpses on the ground

But, woe! A new war looms large,
as dashes against commas charge

And cut across the commas’ necks
so that the beheaded wrecks

(the dashes delight in gore)
as semicolons hit the floor

Both semicolon types they bury
in silence in the cemetery

Those dashes that still remain,
Creep blackly behind the mourning train

The exclamation holds a sermon
with colon’s help, right on the spot

Then through their comma-form free nation
They all march home: dash, dot, dash, dot…

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