I Wrote It My Way

My friend Lee and I established months ago that our Introduction to English class is a waste of time. As such, we decided to have a little fun (once again) while in lecture earlier this morning.

At the beginning of class, all of the approximately 200 people in lecture received a sheet on "Figurative Language," the back of which was splayed with numerous vocabulary words pertaining to poetry.

There was a large chunk of information blandly written on the front of the sheet, discussing how readers should become aware of an author's figurative language and how it exercises our imagination through the use of metaphors. (You know, basic "English stuff" that has already been exhausted in the three and a half years I have taken classes.)

Anyway, Lee and I decided to "rewrite" the paragraph. He grabbed a pen from his bag, and I reached for the pencil behind my ear. Together, we collaborated; we edited out full sentences, disregarded certain phrases, and picked out specific words to keep until, in the end, we had formed one extensive, complicated sentence:

Images that engage a writer generate lamb's wool with hair likened to the harmony of a creation of the child's divine God of a metaphor.

(That's from about 200 or so words of text that describe William Blake's poem "The Lamb.")


Below the newly-mutilated paragraph were excerpts from various poems, movies, and books. We, of course, came up with different variations, combining each of the works together.


Simile: A direct, explicit comparison of one thing to another, and usually using the words "like" or "as" to draw the connection.

Here and there
his brown skin hung in strips
like ancient wallpaper.--Elizabeth Bishop, "The Fish"

Between my finger and my thumb
The squat pen rests, snug as a gun. --Seamus Heaney, "Digging"

But I hung on like death:
Such waltzing was not easy. -- Theodore Roethke, "My Papa's Waltz"

Metaphor: One thing pictured as if it were something else, suggesting a likeness or analogy between them.

The Lord is my shepherd. I shall not want. --Psalm 23

they brows an infant crown --William Blake "A Cradle Song"

Life is like a box of chocolates. --Forrest Gump


The final result?

Ancient wallpaper, snug as a gun
Hung on like death:
Waltzing between
The shepherd; a box of chocolates.

Yes, we are that terribly immature. We giggled the entire length of lecture, disregarding what our lecturer was saying about postcolonial literature. Instead, our shenanigans at rewriting the study guide took a more serious turn, and we ended with this summary; one taken from the definition and examples of personification:

All hands on deck,
Treating an abstraction
As if it were a person,
Endowing it with the stars
And watered heaven.

2 comments:

  1. hahaha immature indeed! At the mention of post-colonial literature, I am writing a paper about social dynamics as represented in what would be classified as such (more specifically post-revolutionary literature!)

    Believe it or not..it's a political science paper!

    ReplyDelete
  2. hahaha sounds like a boring lecture. I miss college English though. It was the one class I was good at and enjoyed! ...I need to go back.

    my email is ncwitowski@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete

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