Chunk 6


How does she get away with it? If you look at Consider the poem’s sentence structure. you’ll see that The first two sentences are a parade of items sentence errors–redundancy, fragment, ambiguous pronoun reference, flaccid modifiers–that, in isolation, we would unequivocally call examples of horrifically bad writing. Here they are as prose lines:
In the wake of horrible events each act or word is fortified with added
significance, unabsorbable as nutrients added to the outside of food: it
can’t do any good. As if significance weren’t burdensome enough (16).

The third sentence fragment, with its implied (missing) be verb, is serves the poem as both shift and closure: “Now the wave-slapped beach rocks [are] not just made to talk but made to teach.” (explain why) It’s not that one single excellent sentence can redeem two grammatically and stylistically bad ones; it’s how Ryan deliberately and knowledgeably plays with dissipated clichés that makes turns those flawed sentences into viable ideas, much less and dense poetry.


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