Paronomasia (pa-ro-no-ma’-si-a): Using words that sound alike but that differ in meaning (punning).
The hare on my head kept it warm. His big furry legs hung over my ears like earmuffs. His body temperature was a toasty warm 90 degrees. The hares are trained from babies to perch on a head with no chin strap! I had gotten my first hare when I was 14. Prior to that I wore 3 squirmy strap-on hamsters on my head. That is, in my Arctic culture the head-hare is bestowed as a part of a coming-of-age ritual. You train all of your childhood with your hamsters and a special rubber robot hare that your mother keeps under lock and key and takes out on Mondays for you to practice with.
One day I got into a jam with my hare—it was strawberry and it was on my toast. I shouldn’t have been wearing my hare at breakfast! When I bent my head down to get a bite of toast, my hair shifted and my hare lost his balance and fell on my toast. This was a major faux pax. Luckily, we were alone at breakfast. I quickly washed him off and hid him under my bed until he dried. If he was caught, he would be tonight’s dinner: that morning, my hare came within a hair of being baked. It was all my fault, but there was a zero-tolerance policy in my village on falling hares.
Anyway, having your own personal hare riding on your head and keeping your ears warm is a wonderful adaptation of one species to another. I am grateful for my hare. Some day I will give him a name.
Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).
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