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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Metaphor and Simile

This week, I'm offering two words for the price of one. :) 

Metaphors and similes are both figures of speech used to make comparisons.  People (kids and adults) sometimes have difficulty remembering which is which, so I thought I'd write about both words in the same post.

A metaphor implies, or suggests, a comparison between two things.

Here are two well-known metaphors.  The first comes from a play:

"All the world's a stage,
and all the men and women merely players."
~ from "As You Like It" by William Shakespeare

The second is a poem:


The fog comes
on little cat feet.

It sits looking
over harbor and city
on silent haunches
and then moves on.

~ Carl Sandburg

And here is a metaphor that I wrote:

The autumn leaf pirouettes to the ground,
a graceful ballerina.

On the other hand, a simile compares two unlike things explicitly, using the words "like" or "as".

I found the following simile online, and it made me chuckle:

A simile is like a metaphor. 
~Author unknown

Here's a famous simile from a movie:

"My mama always said, 'Life was like a box of chocolates.
You never know what you're gonna get.'"

~from "Forrest Gump"

Here is one last example, written by me:

Dignified, the cat posed on the window sill
like a king on his throne.

Metaphors and similes can add pizazz to your writing.  (They are fun to come up with, too!)  What kinds of interesting comparisons come to your mind?  Please share them -- I'd love to see your metaphors and similes! :)

1 comment:

  1. Just for the record, thank you for posting the Fog poem. I read it somewhere (on a test, maybe?) and have been looking for it ever since.