English 207 Studies in Poetry

Dr. Morillo


A Dozen Metaphors and Similes (all pages keyed to Seagull Reader)



The Sea of Faith

Was once, too, at the full, and round earth's shore

Lay like the folds of a bright girdle furled.

But now I only hear

Its melancholy, long withdrawing roar,


(Matthew Arnold, Dover Beach ll. 21-5, p. 14)



For poetry makes nothing happen: it survives

In the valley of its making where executives

Would never want to tamper, flows on south

From ranches of isolation and the busy griefs,

Raw towns that we believe and die in; it survives,

A way of happening, a mouth.


(W. H. Auden, In Memory of W. B. Yeats ll. 36-42, p. 23)



his brown skin hung in strips

like ancient wallpaper,

and its pattern of darker brown

was like wallpaper:

shapes like full-blown roses

stained and lost through age.


(Elizabeth Bishop, The Fish ll. 10-15, p. 30)



When the stars threw down their spears,

And watered heaven with their tears,


(William Blake, The Tyger ll. 17-18, p. 38)



The heart, no valentine,

decides to quit after lunch,

the power shut off like a switch,

or a tiny dark ship is unmoored

into the flow of the body's rivers,

the brain a monastery,

defenseless on the shore.


(Billy Collins, Picnic, Lightning ll. 13-19, p. 74)





when the world is puddle-wonderful


(e. e. cummings in Just- ll.9-10, p. 78)



After great pain, a formal feeling comes--

The Nerves sit ceremonious, like Tombs--


(Emily Dickinson, Poem 341, ll. 1-2, p. 90)



The stream was swift, and so cold

I thought I would be sliced in two


(Louise Erdrich, Captivity ll. 1-2, p. 115)



Before this fire of sense decay,

The smoke of thought blow clean away,


(A. E. Housman, The Immortal Part ll. 41-2, p. 167)



What happens to a dream deferred?


Does it dry up

Like a raisin in the sun?


(Langston Hughes, Harlem ll. 1-3, P. 174)



My clouded reflection eyes me

like a bird of prey, the profile of night

slanted against morning.


(Yusef Komunyaaka, Facing It ll. 6-7, p. 127)



The apparition of these faces in the crowd:

Petals on a wet, black bough.


(Ezra Pound, In a Station of the Metro, p. 251)