Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Beyond Abstractions

Kahlil Gibran wrote, “Your soul is often a battlefield upon which your reason and your judgment wage war against your passion and your appetite.”

This example reveals an opportunity the writer did not take. When Gibran began his notion of the soul, he used the metaphor of a battlefield and then explained about waging war inserting four abstractions. He could have defined each further by example.

We may connect with his reasoning but still need details and realistic pictures in words to understand his meaning of reason, judgment, passion and appetite.

As writers we need to communicate to the reader our point of view through metaphor, imagery and details. Because we come from a variety of backgrounds and experiences, the above words create different reactions. We need to show examples of complex emotions to give the reader a clue to our intentions.

One person’s reason might become another’s wrong. Judgment becomes another issue. Who’s the judge? Passion and appetite have potential for images also.

Creative Write:  What does reason look like? How could you show it in action? See where you can take these four abstractions, either together or separately.

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