Dive in, splash around, skim and dip and spout about the latest quotations, metaphors, words and, of course, triologisms. You’ll feel better for it!

A quote to note

Drawing on thousands of sparkling, moving and inspiring quotations amassed during decades of attentive reading. To delight your mind and spirit and improve your presentations beyond belief.

Thoughtless gifts

Thoughtless gifts

Listening time: 3 minutes. A curious shopping list of bizarre commemorative gifts presented by foreign governments after the war, to the people who...

read more
Part of the pabulum

Part of the pabulum

Listening time: 6 minutes. To celebrate April Fools’ Day, I’d like to share with you the Preface of the classical Chinese Expanded Treasury of...

read more
How to be a great man

How to be a great man

In Elio Vittorini's quiet novel, the narrator's mother tells us that keeping a thousand (conflicting) things in your head at the same time makes for...

read more
Motherly concerns

Motherly concerns

A curious response, funny as told by Mark Twain, concerning his questioning his mother about his having been a sickly child: "I suppose during all...

read more

Metaphorically speaking

More marvelous metaphors on Mondays … Monday, metaphor day.

Who cares about a key?

Who cares about a key?

How do you convey a casually callous attitude to members of an aristocratic household, where even their death is nothing more than a mild and...

read more
On tolerating your peers

On tolerating your peers

A lively metaphor for keeping something at arm's length, in this case the aristocratic society to which the baroness belongs.  It evokes a curious...

read more
Metaphor for memory

Metaphor for memory

A striking way to describe an enduring memory, even though teeth usually last longer than a lifetime. In the course of a lifetime there are some...

read more

Triologisms

Bringing you pithy, evocative imagery in the form of three-legged microcosms of meaning. Updated on Tuesdays … Tuesday, triologism day!  You’ll never see this day of the week in the same way again.

Well-smoked meerschaum

Well-smoked meerschaum

Meerschaum is a type of clay used to make tobacco pipes, so having been well-smoked they should have mellowed from off-white to an old polished...

read more
Rain-soaked air

Rain-soaked air

I write this looking out onto the rain-soaked air of today's wet weather, set to continue through the weekend so it will be Monday before Dante's...

read more
Dust-smelling regions

Dust-smelling regions

A detail in Peake's labyrinthine ancient buildings with their centuries of accretions of traditions and lives and ... dust.  Here he reminds us of...

read more
Sternest-seeming stoic

Sternest-seeming stoic

Alliteration always appeals, hence my choosing this thrice-sibilant stoic, stern as he seems. The sternest-seeming stoic is human after all; and to...

read more
Flower-sprinkled turf

Flower-sprinkled turf

Having recently moved into a house set in a vast wooded garden, I am looking to turn its green swathes into 'flower-sprinkled turf' which should...

read more
Caique-dwelling tom

Caique-dwelling tom

Leigh Fermor uses an evocative triologism to describe how island cats replenish their stock with outside strains.  You can imagine a tom-cat leaping...

read more

Words

Sharing words that sparkle, appeal, intrigue or otherwise grab me, including in other languages. And adoring alliteration, words are added on Wednesdays… Wednesday, word day. See you back here then.

Lauzengier

Lauzengier

Lauzengier (also 'lauzenger') appears in the songs of French troubadours.  An old Occitan word but surely one which it may be timely to pluck from...

Gulch it down

Gulch it down

Mervyn Peake uses Rabelaisian vocabulary to describe the gargantuan appetites and appearance of Swelter, the castle cook in his Gormenghast trilogy....

Mummarella

Mummarella

You would know the 'true' octopus if you saw it, wouldn't you? Reading a book about Mediterranean seafood, Luiz learned that according to an...

Ullage of sunflower

Ullage of sunflower

Something about this word that you can roll around the mouth like a good swig of wine or cognac, the removal of which would result in its ullage in...

Cragfast

Cragfast

Stuck?  In a tight corner?  No going forward ... or back?  Call yourself Cragfast. A sheep cornered on a crag, to starve in the absence of rescue....

I find it moving that no literary text is utterly original, no literary text is completely unique, that it stems from previous texts, built on quotations and misquotations, on the vocabularies fashioned by others and transformed through imagination and use.  Writers must find consolation in the fact that there is no very first story and no last one.  Our literature reaches further back than the beginnings of our memory permits us, and further into the future than our imagination allows us to conceive, but that must be the only barrier.  

Source: Alberto Manguel, The City of Words, CBC Massey Lecture Series (Toronto: Anansi Press, 2007), p. 139

Love writingredux.com?  Enjoy our sister sites:

www.foolsareeverywhere.com    I    www.nuannaarpoq.com    I    www.spyderceleste.com    

© Beatrice Otto 2023 - design & content unless otherwise stated - all rights reserved

 

 

Pin It on Pinterest