The Writerly Habit

This blog is about my struggles to get into the habit of writing regularly.

Increase Your Literary Vocabulary

Have you ever run across a poem or other work that addresses an inanimate object? We see this a lot with more flowery poets. Oh moon! Oh stars! Oh freedom! This is addressing a personified thing rhetorically which is also known as an apostrophe. An apostrophe also refers to addressing a person who isn't there. So now when you come across someone reading a poem such as the below sonnet by Alfred Lord Tennyson, you can sound exceedingly brilliant by pointing out the apostrophe. Huzzah!

Oh, Beauty, passing beauty!


Oh, Beauty, passing beauty! sweetest Sweet! How canst thou let me waste my youth in sighs? I only ask to sit beside thy feet. Thou knowest I dare not look into thine eyes, Might I but kiss thy hand! I dare not fold My arms about thee--scarcely dare to speak. And nothing seems to me so wild and bold, As with one kiss to touch thy blessed cheek. Methinks if I should kiss thee, no control Within the thrilling brain could keep afloat The subtle spirit. Even while I spoke, The bare word KISS hath made my inner soul To tremble like a lutestring, ere the note Hath melted in the silence that it broke.

The Suppressed Poems of Alfred Lord Tennyson (Dodo Press)


'Ailina said...

Ah! So I've learned two words today: "apostrophe" (in its alternative context) and "lutestring"! :D