The Metamorphosis of Punctuation Marks by Diana Manole

They spell themselves out and I pretend I understand  


stuffed plump commas slither on our skin 
seeking the best place to come 
to a full stop 


translucent jade wings ingrained 
in bodies of blackness
future flutters still faulted by default
the course of life is not the course of writing

 dot dot dot 

commas square the circle
like Lilliputian miracle hands 


if I were to slice them open 
at the right time 
acid ink would ooze out
dissolving any scab in its way 


eagerness to lose themselves
into the context
vital mostly when absent 
no better than a long-lost lover
an afterthought  


they have risen indeed
from between the words
like moths shooting for the light
with no memory of the caterpillars
to cannibalize themselves 
for the sake of



Copyright © Diana Manole. First appeared in Poem in Your Pocket Day 2018.


Diana Manole is a Romanian-Canadian writer, translator, and scholar. As a native Romanian writer, she has published six collections of poems and four plays, won 14 literary awards, including two prizes from the Romanian Writers’ Union, and contributed to numerous national and international anthologies and magazines. Her sixth collection of poems, B&W, came out in a Romanian-English bilingual edition (Tracus Arte, 2015). Find Diana on Twitter at @dianamanole2013.

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