There But For The

July 7, 2011

“Animals, Mark, have no use for nostalgia, Aunt Kenna says. It is not a tool for survival, my darling.

But Mark has seen the pug, on a walk, pick up a stone in its mouth and carry it for a little of the walk before putting it down, and then on the way back home again stop to find the same stone and pick it up to carry it some of the way back.”

ALI SMITH IS JUST SO GOOD AT COMMAS

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2 Responses to “There But For The”

  1. Andreia Blue Says:

    I always worry that I’m being fussy and artificial if I use a lot of commas like that, though last night I was reading a Clifford Simak story (see my most recent Facebook post for a tragic update) and I noticed at one point that he had nearly a dozen commas in a sentence (and a sentence in the voice of one of those Simakian rural narrators, not an educated person) and it was wonderfully unobtrusive, and had that nice structural-rhythmic-sequential jazz that I enjoyed in your own delicious example.


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