With Head Off & Split, Nikky Finney establishes herself as one of the most eloquent, urgent, fearless and necessary poets writing in America today. What makes this book as important as anything published in the last decade is the irresistible music, the formal dexterity and the imaginative leaps she makes with metaphor and language in these simply stunning poems. This is a very, very important achievement.
The characters are, by their nature, archetypes that can serve different metaphors.
If there's ever a character who can only serve one metaphor, I'll probably tell one story with that character and be done with it.
The metaphor is the story, not the character.
I'm not building each one character around one metaphor, so much as trying to build a heroic archetype that can be used to express the kind of metaphors that I find in each story.
The metaphors exist for the stories.
Our subconscious works in metaphors, stories, and word play. That's why a particular story or movie may mean more to some people than to others. Have you considered why you quest for this tale now?
There's a great metaphor that one of my doctors uses: If a fish is swimming in a dirty tank and it gets sick, do you take it to the vet and amputate the fin? No, you clean the water. So, I cleaned up my system. By eating organic raw greens, nuts and healthy fats, I am flooding my body with enzymes, vitamins and oxygen.
Audio virology is not a metaphor. It is to be taken literally. It maps real processes of mutation, transmission, contagion and memory within music culture.
Frankenstein can be a metaphor for abandonment, or wanting to be accepted for who you are, or not liking who you are and wanting to actually change that.
In terms of viewing the world in a certain way, when you're talking about monsters and talking about the metaphor that you're trying to create, as Black Americans, you oft times stand apart and you have to look at things from the inside out or the outside in.
When I started, I was aware of using the black as a rhetorical device. It's understanding that black people come in a wide range of colors, but you find instances in a lot of black literature in which the blackness is used as a metaphor.
The system metaphor is a story that everyone-customers, programmers, and managers-can tell about how the system works.
Every time I write these words they become a taboo,Making sure my punctuation curve, every letter here's true,Living my life in the margin, and that metaphor was proof.
A vampire is a flexible metaphor. You know, death, sex, change, stagnation, loss of self, loss of agency, having to keep one's real self secret, the possibility of something lasting forever: love, hate, grief.
That to fly requires chaotic, sometimes even violent passages-becomes a metaphor for all of life's most meaningful endeavors.
You generally know when someone asks you to do something- am I more writing, or am I more editing? The editor is the best metaphor for your job.
Which is the woman, which the child? The joyous laugh that opens doors, steals sugared moments from the shelf? Or the dreamer mixing metaphors with tears to make a book of self To read aloud in winter's rooms When summer's sounds have ceased to bloom?
The story of survival is a nice metaphor for our experience making this movie, finding your inner strength and powering through and getting to the endpoint alive.
Matterhorn is my metaphor of the Vietnam War - we built it, we abandoned it, we assaulted it, we lost, and then we abandoned it again.
I always think of it you know building a business, building a brand, a friend of mine gave me a metaphor for it which I think is really true it's like building coral, you don't see it happening it's just little little little and when you step back you think wow.
Once, long ago in her world, a sunny day in spring was her favorite, but now a sunny day in winter delights her more. It is the perfect metaphor for their love. Sunshine on ice. She warms his frost. He cools her fever.
Journeys become very good metaphors. They always have the character put into circumstances that reveal him. If I had based my characters in New York and had them just sitting and thinking about life, it would be like what contemporary U.S. fiction is about. That is very heavy, literally, for me. It doesn't become mainstream enough because the pages don't turn themselves.
Kind of like love before first sight." and "Butterflies in your stomach. That was such a crappy metaphor. More like killer bees.
If technology is not a metaphor for memory, what is it?
I'm super happy to see the record doing its thing and for people to like it, but for me, I had a great victory just as a person. I overstepped countless obstacles by creating that record. And the record's a metaphor for the personal steps I [took] throughout the past year.
Hooliganism incarnate, a walking, talking, screaming, squawking metaphor for What's Wrong With Young People Today.
Our sense of justice depends on our sense of time. Justice is a phenomenon only of consciousness, because time spread out in a spatial succession is its very essence. And this is possible only in a spatial metaphor of time.
Subjective conscious mind is an analog of what is called the real world. It is built up with a vocabulary or lexical field whose terms are all metaphors or analogs of behavior in the physical world.
It is by metaphor that language grows.
I was initially planning to write about grief in terms of Eurydice and the myth thereof. By that point the overall metaphor of height and depth and flat and falling and rising was coming into being in my mind.
When we talk about the Universe Story we are talking about the acquisition of a totally new paradigm, one which overturns many of the patterns that we unconsciously believe to be true. There is not simply the addition of new metaphors and images, but the metaphors and images themselves flow out of a new consciousness inspired by a new awareness of the cosmos.
I can entertain the proposition that life is a metaphor for boxing-for one of those bouts that go on and on, round following round, jabs, missed punches, clinches, nothing determined, again the bell and again and you and your opponent so evenly matched it's impossible not to see that your opponent is you.... Life is like boxing in many unsettling respects. But boxing is only like boxing.
Hughes' debut novel, At Dawn, follows a former All-American wrestler, and is there any better metaphor for contemporary American life? We're all wrestling, tussling with the economy, no jobs, doing the best we can. Hughes doesn't flinch from the tough existential questions. He embraces them.
It's a beautiful aspect of narrative construction, hunting for the right images and metaphors to render our character's hearts/minds/souls as though they're ecosystems, full-fledged settings for a reader to inhabit like a place.
Maybe we need more dialogue in terms of our faith, in terms of those who are believers, or even nonbelievers, about that aspect, and what that might mean if you were interpreting. You don't have to believe it; maybe you could draw a metaphor from it.
I have myself always been terrified of plagiarism - of being accused of it, that is. Every writer is a thief, though some of us are more clever than others at disguising our robberies. The reason writers are such slow readers is that we are ceaselessly searching for things we can steal and then pass off as our own: a natty bit of syntax, a seamless transition, a metaphor that jumps to its target like an arrow shot from an aluminum crossbow.
One's capacity for metaphor is one's capacity for a full life.
The metaphor is probably the most fertile power possessed by man
Poetry has become the higher algebra of metaphors.