Apparently Oxford students must sit exams with no clothes on What about menstruating people? Stop being so negative I always try to face reality Everyone will have to wear a napkin And who is going to pay for these? Who do you think? The general public, of course
There are no men’s and women’s toilets So who are the toilets for? Anybody. But not men or women? Not labelled as such
I don’t want to walk in and see men peeing blatantly You’ve seen them on the beaches, you’ve seen them on the sands Who are you, Winston Churchill?’t Who is he? You don’t know? I’m just teasing you.He was our War Leader I can’t imagine Boris leading us.We never see him The invisible man made flesh Why are these leaders going downhill? To evade the enemy within What’s that? Constipation How ridiculous! But they have glycerin suppositories They can’t use those in War No,we fire them at our enemy Who is that? We’ve not decided yet Rome or the Palestinian Territories They won’t harm us, they have no army Yes, that’s what is so cunning See a doctor asap Why? Never ask the reason why Why not? It’s a doctrine Does it breed? Not here.Do you I try my best It’s not good enough I know that. Can’t you do better? No,I am at my wits’ end At least you can punctuate What is grammar without a text? Why, you are bright after all.I will make you The Vice Chancellor What type of vice? Do stop tormenting me.Make it up as you go along Is that what you do? Yes, it’s all I have from 7 years of higher education Even higher education can be low in the UK So true.
“Students can learn how to utilize grammar in their own writing by studying how poets do—and do not—abide by traditional writing rules in their work. Poetry can teach writing and grammar conventions by showing what happens when poets strip them away or pervert them for effect. Dickinson often capitalizes common nouns and uses dashes instead of commas to note sudden shifts in focus. Agee uses colons to create dramatic, speech-like pauses. Cummings of course rebels completely. He usually eschews capitalization in his proto-text message poetry, wrapping frequent asides in parentheses and leaving last lines dangling on their pages, period-less. In “next to of course god america i,” Cummings strings together, in the first 13 lines, a cavalcade of jingoistic catch-phrases a politician might utter, and the lack of punctuation slowing down and organizing the assault accentuates their unintelligibility and banality and heightens the satire. The abuse of conventions helps make the point. In class, it can help a teacher explain the exhausting effect of run-on sentences—or illustrate how clichés weaken an argument.
Yet, despite all of the benefits poetry brings to the classroom, I have been hesitant to use poems as a mere tool for teaching grammar conventions. Even the in-class disembowelment of a poem’s meaning can diminish the personal, even transcendent, experience of reading a poem. Billy Collins characterizes the latter as a “deadening” act that obscures the poem beneath the puffed-up importance of its interpretation. In his poem “Introduction to Poetry,” he writes: “all they want to do is tie the poem to a chair with rope/and torture a confession out of it./They begin beating it with a hose/to find out what it really means.””