The other day, I linked to a post at Kill Zone Blog about punctuation. That post included an Emily Dickenson poem, which is a great choice for looking at dashes, certainly. But it made me think of other poems and poets that march to a different punctuation drum, such as:
maggie and milly and molly and may
went down to the beach(to play one day)
and maggie discovered a shell that sang
so sweetly she couldn’t remember her troubles,and
milly befriended a stranded star
whose rays five languid fingers were;
and molly was chased by a horrible thing
which raced sideways while blowing bubbles:and
may came home with a smooth round stone
as small as a world and as large as alone.
For whatever we lose(like a you or a me)
it’s always ourselves we find in the sea
That’s by, of course, ee cummings. I’m sure you all realized that, even if you have never encountered this particular poem before. I don’t remember ever seeing it before in my life, but I like it a lot, so I’m happy to share it with you all. As small as a world and as large as alone. That’s a wonderful line.
Also, more distracting than any possible use of punctuation or capitalization — lack of spaces! Does anybody else think so? I’m wondering what effect that is supposed to produce, and whether it produces that effect. It makes me pause, startled, every time.