Tag Archives: hypallage

Hypallage

Hypallage (hy-pal’-la-ge): Shifting the application of words. Mixing the order of which words should correspond with which others. Also, sometimes, a synonym for metonymy (see Quintilian).


I ate the lonely candy. I was by myself on the deck we built together last summer. I want to sleep, but all I can do is taste the bitterness that’s spread across my regret—like a spoiled condiment or a piece of Taylor Ham gone bad after spending a month in my refrigerator’s meat drawer. Slowly rotting, etched green around the edges, smelling like the decaying corpse of a small rodent—a walled hamster, or something the cat dragged in and stashed behind a chair or the couch. Regardless, the sad couch offers little comfort. I make tea and it tastes like iron filings mixed with motor oil. I don’t know. It is somewhat frightening. I dump it into the sink. I grab the scotch and pour a healthy measure, almost filling the glass. I take a gulp, in two seconds the patron scotch sends waves of warmth through my sad body. I slump. I sleep. I’m awakened by a pounding on my door. My house is in flames. I breathe deeply of the thickening smoke. I cough. I choke. I pass out. An angel shakes me and reaches out her hand. I wake up in the hospital. I am all alone. I don’t want to be here. I want to be dead. Then you come through the door carrying a bunch of roses. You stand there with tears running down your cheeks. You tell me what you’ve been doing since you dumped me. Then you tell me it was you who pulled me out of my burning house—that you saved my life. I am taken aback, but not far enough to forgive you for abandoning me or to thank you for saving my life. I throw the roses at you and tell you to go away— to go haunt some other sucker. You leave. My lovely nurse returns to my room. She brought me some candy. She has such an open and vulnerable look in her eyes. We lock eyes. She makes a barely audible whimpering sound, holds my hand, and kisses me gently, lingering on my forehead. Under my bandages I can feel myself coming back to life.


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

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Hypallage

Hypallage (hy-pal’-la-ge): Shifting the application of words. Mixing the order of which words should correspond with which others. Also, sometimes, a synonym for metonymy (see Quintilian).

I was eating a piece of wistful chocolate cake with vanilla ice cream on top of it. I had worked for the Crown of Creation Casket Company for 45 years.

I am retiring, and this is my party.

My retirement gift is a beautiful burgundy smoking jacket made from the finest velvet the company uses to line it’s “Regal Cruise” selection of caskets.

I tried the jacket on in the men’s room and couldn’t help feeling like I was important–like I was going to a better place–not the better place where our clients go–just a better place, like the mall, or a state park, or the movies.

I nearly laughed out loud as I grabbed another piece of cake and scooped a giant plop of vanilla ice cream on top of it. There’s a problem: I don’t even smoke!

Hmmm.

But, I do drink 4 glasses of wine every night.

Hmmm.

You can sit in a big comfy chair and drink and smoke. Consequently, drinking won’t put undue strain, or wear, on the jacket! That is, like smoking, drinking is a sedentary activity. It may involve a bit more exercise, like getting up and pouring another drink, but by and large one sits and drinks just like one sits and smokes.

Problem solved: I will make my smoking jacket into a drinking jacket. Instead of keeping a lighter in its pocket, I’ll carry a corkscrew.

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

Hypallage

Hypallage (hy-pal’-la-ge): Shifting the application of words. Mixing the order of which words should correspond with which others. Also, sometimes, a synonym for metonymy (see Quintilian).

His brutish butt hung half-moon over the rampart as he sat on its edge eating a bagful of jellied donuts. Never a model soldier, his rear end stood watch while his drooling eyes surveyed the blots of grease staining his beloved bakery bag.

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

Hypallage

Hypallage (hy-pal’-la-ge): Shifting the application of words. Mixing the order of which words should correspond with which others. Also, sometimes, a synonym for metonymy (see Quintilian).

Can I trust you? Is a mountain a mudflat?

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

Hypallage

Hypallage (hy-pal’-la-ge): Shifting the application of words. Mixing the order of which words should correspond with which others. Also, sometimes, a synonym for metonymy (see Quintilian).

Birds do not bark. Dogs do not tweet. Cows do not croak. Frogs do not moo. Stop trying to prove yourself by doing what you can’t do.

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

Hypallage

Hypallage (hy-pal’-la-ge): Shifting the application of words. Mixing the order of which words should correspond with which others. Also, sometimes, a synonym for metonymy.

Our starry singing rose to meet the jubilant sky.

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