Figures Of Speech, Part 1: Metaphor And Simile

I've gotten hold of an old reference book of mine and dusted it off.  "The Facts Of English" authored by Ronald Ridout and Cifford Witting stood me in good stead during the time I studied English in college, among other books at the time,  in my conquest of the English language short of lexicography.:-)

Coincidentally, it happened that I had been wooing a girl to whom I intended to write a poem which succeded in not winning her heart.  My attempts at writing poetry ended up being not vain.  She received all of them poems which precipitated the early demise of

my romantic, if not truly literary, aspirations.  The reason, I would learn later, why the poems and she disappeared with the sunset is that I wrote a series of doggerel when I flipped through the pages of the above-mentioned book:

A doggerel, it says there, very simply put, is "poetry of poor quality."  That episode would later haunt me in my dreams.

I am not about to enlarge further on that now because the book contains the more substantial subjects worthy of serious study, the Figures of Speech that are a prerequisite to spice up speech and writing, especially having to do with poetry.  Writing poetry is an individual  or personal matter and every one can write it  from the heart without the restrictions of books, but it will help to know the essential of poems.

And that is, Metaphor and her sister  Simile.  Again, I won't steal the thunder from the authors who say it best about the general subject:  "Figurative language is any departure from plain statement or the literal use of words."  No further explanations are necessary to explain the concepts to the young at heart  who use metaphors and similes unconsciously, like:

1.  Sharon L. West,

as moderator,  is like a mother hen to us on Expertscolumn. (Simile)

2.  The Administrator is like Santa Claus sharing the EC revenues equally with the writers. (Simile)

3.  The Wikinut Administrator is as deaf as a post.  (Metaphor)

4.  Expertscolumn is the sweetheart of online publishing writers. (Metaphor)

You, dear readers and fellow writers, are my board and lodging (metaphor) because like a bird spreading its wings (simile) I feel your wind beneath my wings (metaphor).  Beautiful ladies on Expertscolumn, you are all worthy of being  likened (simile) to my Venus and Aphrodite (metaphor).

Enough already or I will be pelted with eggs here (almost a metaphor, too).

By the way, I forgot to say, as if on an afterthought, that I haven't reached, at this point in time, the minimum limit of 300 words and the word count doesn't lie (a  This will end the first instalment on the subject of Figures of Speech.

As I write this, there is a nascent cool breeze wafting from my open window.  C'mon, it is beginning to look a lot like Christmas.  Now that is simile far too much, for Christmas is once in a year but pretty much ordinary.

Good night.

October 15, 2012


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