View Full Version : For serious poets only

July 27th, 2016, 12:37 AM
What is meant by figurative language in poetry?

What are figures of speech?

Find one and post it as an example on this thread with a full definition of what it is and what it does in a poem. No repeats are allowed on the thread concerning figurative language.

Let this list grow. From A to Z. I'll start the list on behalf of everyone in the group. I'll begin with Z for zugma.

Zugma: a figure of speech in which a word applies to two others in different senses (e.g., John and his license expired last week) or to two others of which it semantically suits only one.

How many do you know how to use?

July 27th, 2016, 07:33 AM
exaggerated statements or claims not meant to be taken literally.

"He walked like a giant
and buzzed like a gnat."

July 27th, 2016, 09:34 PM
Personification - giving human qualities to something non-human

Opportunity knocks but once.
Deadlines sneak up on you.

August 1st, 2016, 04:48 PM
to generalise, metaphor is a figure of speech - referring to something as being the same as another thing for poetic effect.
- so, figuratively rather than literally.

hey, does this mean I'm now a 'serious poet'?

August 1st, 2016, 04:56 PM
Simile: comparing two dissimilar objects to emphasize certain qualities.

example: He was as cunning like a fox.

Phil Istine
August 1st, 2016, 05:29 PM
Would oxymoron come under this? If so, the best way I might describe would be "contradiction in terms" - though not necessarily literally.
An example: The soccer team I support sometimes plays friendly (non-competitive) pre-season matches against an East London team called Millwall. Their supporters, and some of their past players, have a reputation for being thugs.
So, I guess a "Millwall friendly" would be an oxymoron.

I suppose that the British Secret Service, known an MI5, could also be an oxymoron if referred to as "British Intelligence".

August 2nd, 2016, 01:09 AM
no -I don't think oxymorons are figures of speech - more of a happy or ironic accident in how the word association
might be perceived - for example, 'Millwall friendly' being opposed terms is highly subjective, I would guess.
(I'm a Pompey fan, so I know what you mean - but that's beside the point) -
the terms are meant to be taken literally, in the first case, so do not really qualify as figurative.

- something clearly misunderstood in contemporary history!


August 2nd, 2016, 09:02 AM
Are you sure an oxymoron is not classed as figurative language? Have you googled?

August 2nd, 2016, 10:07 AM
Attricion - The act or process of rubbing one thing against another. To my mind came making a good pesto for my pasta: rubbing various ingredients in a mortar until blended.

but also
Attricion - An imperfect sorrow for sin, not in love of God, but in fear of punishment. "He wrang his hands in attricion"

August 13th, 2016, 08:40 PM
I don't know if this qualifies. An audible metaphor perhaps?

onomatopoeia - a word which describes the sound it is meant to represent such as crack, boom, sizzle, wham.

August 25th, 2016, 10:27 PM
Synecdoche - using a part of something to represent or in place of the whole or using the whole to represent a part.

Examples: We were invaded by suits from corporate.
I was a hired hand.
The Pentagon issued a statement.