Anapodoton (an’-a-po’-do-ton): A figure in which a main clause is suggested by the introduction of a subordinate clause, but that main clause never occurs.
Anapodoton is a kind of anacoluthon, since grammatical expectations are interrupted. If the expression trails off, leaving the subordinate clause incomplete, this is sometimes more specifically called anantapodoton. Anapodoton has also named what occurs when a main clause is omitted because the speaker interrupts himself/herself to revise the thought, leaving the initial clause grammatically unresolved but making use of it nonetheless by recasting its content into a new, grammatically complete sentence.
I was. . . there was a quality of sorrow that I could hardly endure. All day, all night, I was wracked by the wretched sensibility. I tried to affect indifference, but the stabbing feeling wouldn’t go away. Sleepless, I stared at the ceiling and the wall. During the day I donned my bathrobe and watched TV and ate junk food—whipped cream from can to mouth, a jar of maraschino cherries, sour cream by the spoonful and the whole range of Little Debbie cakes. No shower. No toothbrushing. No looking in the mirror.
What the hell was I going to do? What the hell. I realized right then how easy it is to fall in love and how monumentally difficult it is to fall out of love, especially when you’re the dumpee. Somehow I had to find a way to stop caring and go on with my life. I’d heard the saying “time heals all wounds.” But it does not specify how much time. I’d been on this emotional escalator, going down, down, down for about two weeks. It was slow and continuous. I looked behind me to see if anybody else was riding the heartbreak escalator to the bottom of the pits. Nope. Just me. At that second I thought of the really cute woman at the office who always smiled at me and sometimes shared a piece of fruit with me—usually an apple from what she called her “mini orchard.”
The escalator stopped and reversed direction. The stabbing sensation started to go away. I wanted to take a shower and brush my teeth.
On Monday, there she was at her desk at the office. She smiled at me. As I walked toward her, I felt like I would throw up—but I didn’t. Instead, I made a croaking sound when I tried say hello. She looked down and then looked up again. She was blushing and smiling. I cleared my throat and asked if she wanted to go out to dinner on Friday. She said yes, but she was vegan. A red flag for me, but I didn’t give a damn. Flexibility was my new watchword.
It may be true that time heals all wounds. But in my experience, finding a new lover is a miracle cure.
Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).
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