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Metaphor in Spring-Watching Pavilion

Metaphor Examples in Spring-Watching Pavilion:

Spring-Watching Pavilion

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"Love’s vast sea..."   (Spring-Watching Pavilion)

This line directly expresses the poem’s central conceit: the divine—expressed by Balaban as the word “Love”—as an endless body of water. The speaker’s claim is that the divine is all around, a “vast sea” for which one need not search.

"upside-down in sad puddles..."   (Spring-Watching Pavilion)

This second stanza introduces the poem’s central metaphor of the divine as water. In these lines, Ho critiques organized religion through the images of bells creating waves. In John Balaban’s translation, these waves divert the divine water, turning it into “sad puddles” that reflect “heaven upside-down.” The speaker’s claim is that following organized religion leads to a diminished and distorted encounter with the divine.

"unclouded..."   (Spring-Watching Pavilion)

The phrase “unclouded by worldly dust” shows the speaker’s abandonment of society and its material, “worldly” concerns. The metaphor constructed by the word “unclouded” suggests the spiritual clarity the speaker finds in solitude, away from the “dust” of civilization.

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