act I (an exercise in personification)
Like a shy child, she takes her first breath in a madly chaotic world. She is sweet, and young, and her innocence shows in the first faint few notes that she sings, colored pale and orange, creeping almost sheepishly into the speckled blue-black darkness. Higher above, a paler maiden watches with a faint air of haughtiness, her slender nose turned up in regal disdain. The queen of divas, she is accustomed to performing for the stars, and is reluctant to go when her time is up.
Almost timidly, the girl peeks over the edge of the world, resting her cheek on the line between dreams and reality. She grows more confident with each passing minute, and soon she pulls herself up over the divide. She is beautiful, stunning beyond compare; she throws her golden eyes across the dark room as easily as gamblers throw dice. She is dazzling and full of bright energy: The world lights aflame underneath her feet.
Bathed in the orange-gold light of the newcomer’s fame, the diva lets out a soft little sigh and begins to fade, promising to return another night. The stars titter with approval and begin to dance away. They follow their maiden behind the curtain, for the dawn stage is not theirs; their show begins at dusk.
Reeling in defeat, the night vista flees from the path of the sun. The wise old trees wave, as to an old friend; the flowers turn their painted faces upwards and open their arms in welcome. With her familiar and benevolent smile, the sun settles into her throne as queen of the sky; for no matter how many times she rises to fame, no one ever grows tired of the act.
Some really beautiful figurative language for your viewing pleasure
My friend rosepwn sent me this because she is hilarity. I think 2, 5, and 9 are my favorites.
“And so with the sunshine and the great bursts of leaves growing on the trees, just as things grow in fast movies, I had that familiar conviction that life was beginning over again with the summer.”—
Scott F. Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby
This book is mesmerizing me. I stayed at starbucks until 11:00 tonight, reading it. #summer
Types of Figurative Language Starting With the Letter A
alliteration - The repetition of consonant sounds.
Example: Peter Piper picked on a pug of puny proportions.
allusion - A reference to history or literature.
Example: It’s as cold as the 9th circle of hell in here. The reference there is to Dante’s Inferno, the ninth circle of hell has the people imprisoned there trapped within a frozen lake.
anachronism - People, objects, or events placed in the wrong time period.
Example: The clock striking in Julius Caesar.
analogy - A comparison showing likeness.
Example: Learning these types of figurative language is the pathway to being cool.
anaphora - The repetition of the same word(s) or phrase throughout all of part of a work for emphasis.
Example: “You ask for a hamburger, I give you a hamburger. You raise it to your lips and take a bite. Your eye twitches involuntarily. Across the street a father of three falls down the stairs. You swallow and look down at the hamburger in your hands. I give you a hamburger. You swallow and look down at the hamburger in your hands. You cannot swallow. There are children at the top of the stairs. A pickle shifts uneasily under the bun. I give you a hamburger. You look at my face, and I am pleading with you. The children are crying now. You raise the hamburger to your lips, tears stream down your face as you take a bite. I give you a hamburger. You are on your knees. You pleas with me to go across the street. I hear only children’s laughter. I give you a hamburger. You are screaming as you fall down the stairs. I am your child. You cannot see anything. You take a bite of the hamburger. The concrete rushes up to meet you. You awake with a start in your own bed. Your eye twitches involuntarily. I give you a hamburger. As you kill me, I do not make a sound. I give you a hamburger.”
apostrophe - Not the one in words like “can’t”, this apostrophe is to mean that a person or something is being addressed which cannot respond.
Example: Stop looking at me like that, tumblr, I know I should be doing work.
assonance - This is the repetition of similar vowel sounds.
Example: “Tumbling walls buried me in their debris,”
Prompt: Tree Stumps
I trace the line
with a wet fingertip
and a sullen heart;
it isn’t mine
although I wish;
even torn apart
and dreary, I can
imagine that this
great stump meant
so much more than
a plant, some bark,
a minute well spent.
I imagine its roots
as I count the water lines:
I’m at eighty, now;
anchoring such a
I imagine the swing
that hung from the
biggest branch, and
the children singing
as back and forth,
they went; the man
who carved his lover’s
name into the wood,
tattooing his future and past.
I hope for another
to count the lines as I,
and know that it won’t last
Sa bawat pagpatak ng luha ay dama ang hinagpis. Hindi inaakalang ganun kasakit ang bawat tagpo na dadating. Tinatanong ang sarili kung bakit ganun ang kinahinatnan. Buong akala ko kasi ay magiging masaya, pero hindi naman pala.
Sabi mo noon ay tayo talagang dalawa. Hindi ka kamo magpapatinag sa sasabihin ng iba. Wala din naman palang nangyari sa bawat salitang binitawan mo. Bukod tanging sarili ko lang din ang tinakbuhan ko. Ngayon ay nalilinis ang aking mga mata dulot ng pangungulila sa’yo. Pumapatak sa bawat alaalang sasagi sa isip ko.
Wala akong ideya na ganito pala ang pakiramdam. Sana noon pa lang ay hindi na kita nakilala. Mababalewala lang pala ang luhang pumatak noon dahil sa galak. Luha na hanggang ngayon ay bumubuhos dahil naman sa pusong nawasak. Namamaga na ang mga mata na dati’y naaakit sa’yo. Bukod tanging ikaw lang ang natanaw ng paninging ito.
Isa lang naman ang tanong ng aking isipan.
Kailan ba ako tatahan?
Teaching Figurative Language through Poetry/Music
So, for my first lesson plan post I’d like to show you something that I really enjoyed planning, a lesson of Figurative Language (focusing on metaphor, simile, and personification) through poems and music. I created this lesson for my 8th grade Reading and Language Arts class, but it can easily be modified to fit a lower or higher literacy/achievement level classroom. I hope you enjoy!
Poetry in Motion:
- To begin the short unit, only lasting about a week or so, introduce the terms: figurative language, metaphor, simile, and personification; while also providing them with the definition and a few examples.
- Focus on one element of figurative language per class; I started with Personification. So, for that class, I passed out laminated copies of, Once by the Pacific, by Robert Frost. I read the poem out loud to the class once over, then we returned to the poem and discussed it’s meaning and our thoughts on the poem as a whole. Next, the students were encouraged to read it over again in their small groups, paying attention now to the Personification element, and using the fine-tip dry erase markers I gave them, they were to underline or circle examples of Personification they had found.
- For the music aspect of Personification, I did the same type of exercise, but handed them the lyrics of a Lucero song, My Best Girl. (If you have not listened to Lucero, they are absolutely wonderful, and this song references a guitar as “my best girl” and describes the object as possessing romanticized female attributes.)
- We then had a classroom discussion about the poem and song we had read and to my surprise, they had such a meaningful and enriching conversation! I honestly think it was the music that encouraged them to pay more attention, as they enjoyed that more than the poem. So then you can discuss how poetry and music are so closely related, that really opened some of my students’ eyes up!
- With those examples underlined and circled on their laminated copies, they were then instructed to create a poem/song/rap/spoken word of their own using Personification elements. Now, this proved to be a little difficult at first, as these students have not been encouraged to write creatively often, but instead are writing too much persuasive and expository essays (sigh). So, I came prepared! I found a list of about 50 lines of personification from multiple books, poems, songs, and essays on the Internet and I wrote them down on little strips of paper, folded them up, and put them in a brown paper bag. If the student has difficulty thinking of an example of personification, allow them to pick from the bag and use that as the beginning, or ending line of their poem/song/etc.
For the day we covered Metaphor, the students read, O! Captain! My Captain!, by Walt Whitman, and listened to Green Eyes, by I Am the Avalanche.
And for Simile, we read, A Dream Deferred, by Langston Hughes, and listened to Hungry Like the Wolf, by Duran Duran.
I was apprehensive at first, to cover Poetry as an example to Figurative Language in a new class, but the results were incredible! The students begged to cover more poems or songs, and really dove into the whole creative writing process. I am going to be covering a short Poetry unit for my classes these last 3 weeks of school; but 8th graders aren’t exactly jumping out of their chairs to read Shakespeare or Byron, so I’m trying to make it as engaging and hands-on as I can!