As slim and blithe as…

As slim and blithe as…

Here’s Orlando fast forwarding to imagine how his blithe, slim darling might appear at 40.  I liked ‘slim as a reed’ and above all, ‘blithe as a lark’.  May you be so, whatever your age. And he did see her again, centuries later, and she...
As soft as …

As soft as …

Orlando names his lover ‘Sasha’ ostensibly because she is Russian and so was the white fox he had as a boy.  But note what follows the description of this beautiful fox (for surely it was beautiful) as being ‘soft as snow’ – its teeth of...
Cast-iron sun

Cast-iron sun

A surprising image, as if the sun itself were cast in Vulcan’s smithy, a great sizzling shield of liquified iron. ‘Everything passes; but there is no forgetting this huge, cast-iron sun shining through the evening mist, this bitter wind laden with the...
As motionless as …

As motionless as …

I have tried to think of standard similes for stillness, and ‘statue’ is an obvious one, here morphed into a figurehead. Source: Patrick Leigh Fermor, Mani: Travels in the Southern Peloponnese, introduction by Michael Gorra, New York: New York Review of...
As miraculous and consoling as…

As miraculous and consoling as…

I wish you some miraculous and consoling intimations that feel like Helen’s hand laid across your brow. ‘… an intimation as miraculous and consoling as the hand of Argive Helen laid across his brow…’ Source: Patrick Leigh Fermor, Mani:...
As inert as …

As inert as …

Two fine similes to describe inertness, of which I lean to the first as being more euphonic and original. ‘… inert as an aardvark or a giant ant-eater…’ Source: Patrick Leigh Fermor, A Time of Gifts: On foot to Constantinople: from the Hook of Holland to...
Glowing like a comet

Glowing like a comet

Celebrity success à la 16th century – I only knew of Sidney as a poet and courtier but wasn’t aware of his star appeal on the international aristocratic circuit, appropriately conveyed as a glittering comet trail. ‘Sir Philip Sidney’s brief passage...
As voluminous as the Danube

As voluminous as the Danube

I like that Leigh Fermor draws his simile from the place where the lady lives. ‘Her soliloquy flowed on as voluminously as the Danube under her window.’ Source: Patrick Leigh Fermor, A Time of Gifts (London: Penguin Books, 1977), p. 176 Photo credit:...
As blue and as vague as …

As blue and as vague as …

A beautiful image, blueness and vagueness likened to ‘unmapped lakes’, and these, referring to eyes, being misted over with the (over) consumption of plum-brandy.  And those ‘tundra-blank’ faces! ‘Swamp-and-conifer men they looked, with...

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