Hyphen -

(hyphens as punctuation marks)

The Hyphen -

Rated high is the hy-
Phen, a mark that's divine
When divid-
Ing a word
At the end of a line.
The hyphen itself is a line, like the dash.
It's an ex-dash, perhaps,
That got caught in the crash
And the clash and the mash
Of two close-pressing words
And was squeezed until shorter
By fully two thirds.

The dash is a wedge
But the hyphen's like glue,
Sticking this word to that,
Making one word of two.
It fixes prefixes
Like anti- and pro-
And fashions such phrases
As to-and-fro.

The dash may be longer, more dashing, exciting,
But the hy-
Phen's more use-
Ful in read-
Ing and writ-
—This poem is compiled from On Your Marks, A Package of Punctuation
by Richard Armour; McGraw-Hill Book Company; New York; 1969; page 33.

For other marks of punctuation, go to the Index of Punctuation Marks unit.