Tag Archive | Tears in a Basket

The Cliché Collector/ Alchemist: Issue 15

Welcome to the 15th of September and to the 15th issue of #TCCA. Hmm… a ‘fifteenous’ coincidence… 🙂

My thoughts are on Sophia Obi’s first collection of poetry, Tears in a Basket. I did a review of the book about three years ago. The review is still in my files, unpublished. Don’t know why I’m still holding on to it…

Well, one of these days… 🙂

[The lab. Alchemist is on the sofa, rifling through a newspaper].

ALCHEMIST [dropping the paper on a side stool]: Metaphors are linguistic sinews; they are apt: They elevate and enliven writing; but they also can embarrass it. They are, therefore, to be sought, to be coined, and to be used – with caution. What we know today as clichés are mostly dead metaphors. The Jewish-American writer, Howard Nemerov, has this to say about dead metaphors: “That these metaphors may be not dead but only sleeping, or that they may arise from the grave and walk in our sentences, is something that has troubled everyone who has ever tried to write plain expository prose.” Nemerov is as right as life. You are, of course, at liberty to disagree with my assertion. The tragedy is, you are, if you disagree, at risk of slipping, like the ineffectual village speaker, into the in-my-capacity-as-the-chairman gibberish… 😦

[Removing his pince-nez].

Yes, that’s today’s specimen – IN MY CAPACITY AS THE CHAIRMAN

[Coughs slightly]. Actually, I’m not the only one possessed by a fit of coughing. Look around you, Miss Somebody is giggling; Mr. Someone is expiring with laughter. The applause is false, bogus, plastic; mocking, actually. Don’t take your seat gloating in a successful oration: you have not made one. Agreed, you have made a speech and the audience has applauded; but do you know the message you passed across? [Yawning]. Here it is: “In my capacity as an incapable man…”

[Stepping out of the lab] Sorry… 😦