Monday, 19 February 2018

Punctuation (February)

Grammarians spot the comma that found its way into the wrong gap. Their exclamation marks are unforgiving. Semi-colons can be breathless: wait till you hear this! Colons forewarn of the facts. Thanks be for the full-stop, dashes just don’t cut it. Though poets are sensitive. Is this full-stop angry, ironic? They would dispense with them, believing poetry’s like making love: please don’t stop. Ellipsis keeps things private, elides too much information. Lawyers avoid the ambiguous slash and tendentious quote-mark; they decide what governs what. February again, school’s in, learning anew when to judge where to make one long sentence two.

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