A figure of speech is a word or phrase, that deviates from the ordinary language, in such a way that it has a different meaning from the original written meaning in the poem. There are many types of figure of speech in poetry such as Metaphor, Personification, Simile etc.
A metaphor is a figure of speech, that is used to make comparisons between two things that are completely dissimilar and not related. Although the words are dissimilar, there can be a connection or link to the compared word. Unlike a simile which compares two things directly with words such as 'like' or 'as', metaphor is an indirect comparison. In the sentence "The classroom was a zoo", the classroom is compared to a totally dissimilar place like a zoo, and yet it gives the implied meaning that the classroom was in chaos and disorder like a zoo.
The classroom was a zoo
1. He is a night owl.
Owls generally do not sleep at night and therefore, a person who is awake at night is compared to an owl.
2. The storm was a raging bull.
A raging bull is fast, dangerous and does not look around to see who is getting affected. A storm which is similar to the bull is compared here to give the effect that it was dangerous.
3. He is a shining star.
A shining star, with its bright light stands apart from the rest of the group. A person who is outstanding and performs well is a shining star.
4. Laughter is the music of soul.
Music is always pleasant and gives hope. Therefore laughter is said to be the hope giver to the soul.
Metaphors from the poem "The Wonderful Words":
  • For English is a wonderful game - In this line, English which is a language is compared to a game. Language and game are completely dissimilar concepts, but it is brought together to show that words from a language are matched with thoughts in our mind, making it similar to a game like a crossword or puzzle.
  • Words are the food and dress of thought - In this line words are again compared to food and dress, to show that it is important to give form to a thought, just like how food and dress are important for human beings.