Monthly Archives: January 2019

Synechdoche

Synecdoche (si-nek’-do-kee): A whole is represented by naming one of its parts (or genus named for species), or vice versa (or species named for genus).

They weren’t just anybody’s dreams. They were enchantments getting us to see what we couldn’t see. It’s in dreams that possible better futures emerge from visions, from pens and songs and the eyes of the world watching freedom’s drama unfold–at the edges of hell, in the aisles of cathedrals, on the streets, in school yards, at lunch counters, in buses. Set upon at night by White Robes emboldened by the Law’s silence, killing hopeful young men–point blank cowards blowing holes in innocent chests, triggering murder, skulking back into the bushes and driving away, feeling they had done their duty, feeling the justice of their murders in the sticky blood on their hands and the hatred in their hearts.

But, at the time, love triumphed over savagery. Real justice was afforded its place. People went to prison. Legislation was passed. Children went to school.

Thank-you Martin Luther King Jr.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu)

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Synonymia

Synonymia (si-no-ni’-mi-a): In general, the use of several synonyms together to amplify or explain a given subject or term. A kind of repetition that adds emotional force or intellectual clarity. Synonymia often occurs in parallel fashion. The Latin synonym, interpretatio, suggests the expository and rational nature of this figure, while another Greek synonym, congeries, suggests the emotive possibilities of this figure.

I am tired, burned out, worn out. These hours we’ve been keeping are pulling me apart. Day is night, night is day; working, laboring, and nearly groveling to a clock: A clock made to measure time, but the time we put in isn’t being measured.

I want to quit, resign, hand in my notice, take a hike, but then I’ll become homeless, hungry, and lost to the world. Damn.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu)

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Synthesis

Synthesis (sin’-the-sis): An apt arrangement of a composition, especially regarding the sounds of adjoining syllables and words.

We had a way with waves, riding on the surly sea like answers to questions or words wrought to rhyme.

The ocean overlaps the sand and we slide onto the beach, each one of us grateful for the ride. Now its time to light a fire, feel the warmth, have a swig of wine and passionately wish this time won’t end.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

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Syntheton

Syntheton (sin’-the-ton): When by convention two words are joined by a conjunction for emphasis.

Life and death

Hope and fear

Winning and losing

Words have their opposites creating trajectories from one to the other, from the other to the other in dialectical repetitions, in circles unbroken by time, in bent lines.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

Buy a print edition of The Daily Trope! The print edition is entitled The Book of Tropes and is available on Amazon for $9.99.

Synzeugma

Synzeugma (sin-zoog’-ma): That kind of zeugma in which a verb joins (and governs) two phrases by coming between them. A synonym for mesozeugma.

The time, ticking mercilessly, on its faithless arc destroys the present with its inevitable day- and night-making progress. So, the future casts a dim glow, making shadows of our lives stretching into our past like an expanding and contracting yardstick. Constantly altering our memory, reconciling and exacerbating the conflicts that measure arouses.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

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Systrophe

Systrophe (si’-stro-fee): The listing of many qualities or descriptions of someone or something, without providing an explicit definition.

He had tiny hands. They looked like chicken feet sticking out of his shirtsleeves. His lips were almost always puckered–not like he had eaten something bitter, but rather, as if he were sucking a straw and couldn’t get anything to come through it. It was like he looked mad, frustrated and thirsty all at once; maybe like a baby whose ba-ba nipple was malfunctioning. Post-pucker, he would throw his little chicken-feet hands around in no discernible gesture–maybe flailing, definitely not waving. His blond hair was stiffly coifed around his head like an amusement park ride called “Shellac Mountain” with hidden tunnels bypassing his bald flesh and buttressed against the wind’s revelation of the cosmetic circus playing beneath the surface of his hair.

This man wants us to believe he is worth a shit. Some people swear by him like he is Jesus Christ. Many of us just piss our pants or vomit dreading his continued presence in our lives. But some of us are immune to his idiocy having been inoculated with facts and learned opinions. We are biding our time. There will be a judgment day and it isn’t spelled Armageddon.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu)

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Tapinosis

Tapinosis  (ta-pi-no’-sis): Giving a name to something which diminishes it in importance.

So, you’re still a fan of the New York Tinies? They used to be giants, now they’re ants. Give it up. 

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

Buy a print edition of The Daily Trope! The print edition is entitled The Book of Tropes and is available on Amazon for $9.99.

Tasis

Tasis (ta’-sis): Sustaining the pronunciation of a word or phrase because of its pleasant sound. A figure apparent in delivery.

We are soooo happy that Trump will be impeached! It will be like a weight off of everybody’s shoulders, except for Cohen, Manafort and the parade of other low life scum bags that are tangled up in his nefarious lifestyle.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

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Thaumasmus

Thaumasmus (thau-mas’-mus): To marvel at something rather than to state it in a matter of fact way.

I wake up in the morning with a pain in my head.The clock radio is droning the news. It seems like the same stories over and over again, day after day; with the exception of natural disasters and less troubling weather forces.

The stories reflect the best and the worst–the middle is missing. At each extreme we are terrified and humbled, sickened and uplifted, flattened and edified. It is like a spinning top where the extremes blend into a blur, and the blur, as long as the top is spinning, is a fact erasing tensions, obscuring their otherness in a kind of soft dizziness that consciousness fails to capture. Staggering is the norm and holding onto the railing is what gives life its sense of stability.

I am amazed and sickened by the wonder of it all.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu)

Buy a print edition of The Daily Trope! The print edition is entitled The Book of Tropes and is available on Amazon for $9.99.