Similes, Metaphor, and Other Figures

*First Responder Post*

A simile, metaphor, analogy, synesthesia, allusion, personification and mythology is one of many ways a poet can work their way into a readers mind. These literary devices help broaden the horizon of the poem from a written perspective into a visual one. With the help of these devices readers can now understand the message the poet is trying to convey without saying it directly.

For simile and metaphor the author said on page 19 that “ the mind operates by finding likeness when a new piece of information is fed into the brain”. How he stated this shows how a poet is trying to capture but at the same time make the context simple so it can be compared to real life. For example in the poem My Life Had Stood- A Loaded Gun by Emily Dickinson lines 10 to 11 says, “ upon the valley glow- it is as a vesuvian face”. She compares how the valley looks to the face of a person with rage. But metaphors are still comparing without the use of “like or “as”.

An analogy is closely related to a metaphor by finding a similarity between “unlike objects”. Synesthesia is a type of analogy that shows a mixture of data to understand another part. On page 34 it says how musical notes were compared to color because he saw colors when he heard notes. An allusion is references that you would understand depending on knowledge or background. According to page 35 there is an example that’s found in the first chapter of Genesis, “And God said, let there be light: and there was light”. Personification is the giving of human characteristics to inanimate objects. Lisel Muller said, “ The faucet sweats out a bead of water”. This gave the faucet the human ability to sweat. While mythology is references to ancient myths.

Out of all these literary devices some individuals might prefer personification to similes or synesthesia more than allusion. But is one more important, boring or better than another?

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2 Responses to Similes, Metaphor, and Other Figures

  1. dlee says:

    *Commenter Post*

    I would like to expand on your quote from the poem My life Had Stood – A Loaded Gun by Emily Dickenson, “upon the valley glow – it is as a Vesuvian face”. Although I agree with your interpretation of this line from the poem, I would like to add that I believe that this line is both a metaphor and a simile. A Vesuvian face is in itself a metaphor as it is depicting the burning of the valleys of the Vesuvius mountains during the volcanic eruptions, however, the context that Emily Dickenson is using this metaphor in her poem is that of a simile in which she does compare her life to that of a Vesuvian face using the word “as” to relate.

    To add a response to your question, “Out of all these literary devices some individuals might prefer personification to similes or synesthesia more than allusion. But is one more important, boring or better than another?” I would like to comment that every literary device that you mentioned in your response is equally as important for literature as the other. Even beyond literature, we do realize how much we actually use these literary devices in our everyday lives, in our conversations, and our arguments. These literary devices are what add flair and personality to what we say or write.

  2. Keren Gedeon says:

    Commenter
    I agree all these literary devices are important. I dont think one is better than the other. There is something unique about each one of them.
    Dlee mentioned that we use these literary devices in our every day lives and conversations. I see how we may use simile, metaphor, allusions, and even personifications but how do you see the rest of them in our every day lives?
    On page 35 there are examples of allusions where an outsider wouldnt get the meaning. I see that used in my life where I can talk to my friends and we have things that we say to each other that has meaning to us but wouldnt really have meaning to others. I see how a child or even an adult may use personification in everyday life. But i dont really see or understand how i would use mythology and some of the others.

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