The Origins of Fiction and Poetry

The other night, I asked fellow English major Erika for some help with a comma. This conversation devolved in a unique and amusing direction, presented below for your pleasure:

Alyssa: I love punctuation.
Erika: I very much perscribe to the idea of logical punctuation, unless I’m writing poetry… then I might make exceptions.
Alyssa: Poetry is a fun rule breaker, like fiction’s younger sibling always getting into the drugs. Except… I think poetry might be older than fiction.
Erika: Yes, perhaps.
Alyssa: I guess it depends on if legends=fiction? But even then I’m not sure.
Erika: Who knows?
Alyssa: Dr. Tenger.
Erika: It’s probably a chicken/egg thing–haahaha. Oral traditions, yessshhh! But couldn’t epic poetry also be considered fiction though?
Alyssa: Yeah… I’m not sure. Maybe? It’s a very blurry line. Now I want to know the answer to this…
Erika: They were conjoined twins and then literacy came along and KNIFED THEM UP.
Alyssa: Oh literacy and its butchering tendencies. … Then fiction became regulated and proper and drove people to drink and poetry became rebellious and out there and sometimes they get along but normally they sort of just eye each other from opposite corners of the room
Erika: That is exactly what happened.
Alyssa: Oh, definitely.


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