Friday, June 9, 2017

"The End of the Line" by Frequent Contributor Mary Soon Lee

The End of the Line
Mary Soon Lee
I can't
decide
where to draw the line
or rather
where to terminate it,
and whether

or not
to insert a blank line
     or perhaps
          just some white space
               at the beginning.

It's all a matter of taste,
except when a li-
-ne break helps cl-
ar-
it-
y

Poet's Notes: I have spent many hours puzzling over punctuation for my poems, including the matter of where to insert the line breaks. Short lines or long lines? Which words merit coming at the end of a line?

Recently, I wrote one particular piece as a poem, then reformatted it as prose, then pondered the two versions. Word for word, they were almost identical. But laying the piece out as a poem shaped the emphasis.I like the piece better as a poem, but I know that it could rightly be accused of being "cut-up prose." Maybe sometimes, if you cut it up the right way, prose can become poetry.  Lacking confidence that I'd achieved that, I ended up submitting the piece as a short story.

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