May in Venice is better than April, but June is best of all.
—Henry James, from Portraits of Places
Poets think in lines, prose writers in sentences; the best of both work from sound to sense, with an ear for the music in their compositions. S for Sentence celebrates lyricism in prose, the play and craft at work in the artful sentence. We post a sentence a month along with comments by a guest writer on the craft that shapes it, on what makes it great. In one or two sentences.
—Pearl Abraham, Editor
Henry James makes use of word accents to create a strongly metrical sentence: MAY in VEN ice is BET ter than AP ril, but JUNE is BEST of ALL. In the first clause the metrical feet are a mixture of trochaic and dactylic measures, but in the second clause James shifts to straight iambic feet. The total effect of the sentence is something like a dance, a measured lilt around the room, an appropriate meter for the “vacation” atmosphere of the sentence.
— Weathers and Winchester are the authors of Copy and Compose: A Guide to Prose Style, (Prentice-Hall, 1969)