Grammar-Conscious [Poetry]

This is a poem by Marion Cohen. 


I might not have ever managed to get even a mention in the NY Times

but I’ve got something over some of their writers.

They write “one wonders if”.

They write “different than”.

They mix participles with complete sentences.

Yeah, perpendicular structure.


Grammar is very mathematical

which is why I’m good at it.

It’s not only that sentences can get diagrammed.

It’s the placing of commas, parentheses

and quotes, double and single

and then, deeply inside, double again.

Marion Deutsche Cohen’s latest poetry books are Truth and Beauty (WordTech Editions), Closer to Dying (WordTech Editions), and What I’m Wearing Today (dancing girl press – about the joys, Angsts, and politics of thrift-shopping!). Her books total 27, including Crossing the Equal Sign (Plain View Press, about the experience of math) and two controversial memoirs of spousal chronic illness. She teaches math and writing at Arcadia University in Glenside, PA, where she has developed the course Mathematics in Literature. The above-mentioned Truth and Beauty is about the interaction in that course among students and teacher. Other interests are classical piano, singing, Scrabble, thrift-shopping, four grown children, and five grands.

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