Metaphor in After Great Pain, a Formal Feeling Comes

Metaphor Examples in After Great Pain, a Formal Feeling Comes:

Text of the Poem 2

"Quartz contentment..."   (Text of the Poem)

Similar to “formal feeling” earlier, this noun phrase is an oxymoron, or a pair of markedly contradictory terms used for emphasis. “Quartz” is a common rock-forming mineral with a rigid crystalline structure. “Contentment” refers to a state of being satisfied and happy. So, “contentment” suggests a positive feeling while “Quartz” suggests no feeling at all. The speaker’s choice creates a powerful, striking metaphor for how paralyzed the great pain has made her.

"The Feet..."   (Text of the Poem)

While the first stanza focused on the organs responsible for feeling and bearing pain, the second stanza shifts to the feet. This shift transitions from metaphors that explore the speaker’s confused, emotional feelings to metaphors that display confused, rote movement as the speaker continues to experience shock from the “great pain.”