‘Virgula’, the Latin word for a comma, is what moves thoughts and languages forward and what stops the stillness. In Sasja Janssen’s award-winning collection, the comma becomes much more than a punctuation mark. Virgula is invoked as a muse and a companion; she is called on in every poem, as if she were a goddess, friend or lover, someone who offers space when the emptiness becomes too heavy.
I long for a full stop, but my Virgulas are wary of employing them, I press them close as though death were breathing down my neck
Winner of the Awater Poetry Prize and shortlisted for the Ida Gerhardt Poetry Prize, the Herman de Coninck Prize and De Grote Poëzieprijs.