The Simile Museum

“Strength, grace, romance, folly, poetry, youth–she read him like a page.”

-Virginia Woolf

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“I wrote this as a parody of Gilbert and Sullivan because their work epitomizes salient aspects of the British Empire which remain vibrant. And because as a child I was sick to death of hearing “I am the very model of a modern major general.” I enjoyed writing this, playing with rhyme and language–it was like spitting into their cultural soup.”

-Michelle Cliff

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“There are degrees in idealism. We learn first to play with it academically, as the magnet was once a toy. Then we see in the heyday of youth and poetry that it may be true in gleams and fragments. Then its countenance waxes stern and grand, and we see that it must be true.”

-Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

“I commence shaving my head, head shaving as meditation. The old sensation of the clippers is a pleasure that never diminishes, the buzz is dulling and senseless in my ears. My little hairs drift down to the mouth of the toilet and start forming like a rare algae on the surface.”

-Gabe Habash

“My saliva became like hot bitter glue.”

-Ralph Ellison

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“She has killed them, too, I thought, my mother. I saw their bodies stuffed into the well, white limbs bent like elephant tusks. I saw them hanging from the rafters in the attic, wrapped up in my mosquito net like flies. I saw my mother, straight-backed on the balcony with a cup of poisoned tea, the women retching out their innards in the garden below. That is what poison does to a person. A girl from school told me. She heard what my mother had tried to do.”

–  Thirii Myo Kyaw Myint

“The Boston T was completely different from the New York subway–the lines named after colors, the cars so clean and small, like toys. And yet it wasn’t a toy, grown men used it, with serious expressions on their faces.”

-Elif Batuman