Similes and metaphors

Tomorrow is #1linewed on Twitter. It’s my favorite day of the week. #RWKissofDeath announces a theme every week, and you scan your most recent work for lines that fit it–and that fit the 140-character limit.

Tomorrow’s theme is “Similes and Metaphors”. I searched The Bear’s Wife for ” like “, and whoa nelly, do I ever like my similes. I will have to weed down this list, so as not to overwhelm my Twitter feed, but here it is as stands waiting for tomorrow. Sorry for long wordy post … I LOVE this theme!


Soap in hand, he ventured into the stream as naked and unashamed as a bear after trout.

I sat up, a disconsolate orange toadstool with white-shirt gills and a brown-blanket stem.

I loaded my sling with firewood and headed back to the common. Maggie trotted after me, chirruping like a chickadee.

his elegant long hands, his clean-shaven face, even the neatly combed hair that scooped across his forehead like the edge of an apple leaf.

she scrabbled to wrap her arms and legs around me like a small child shaken from a nightmare.

What if we had to keep crossing the mountains the hard way, like scrubbing across a washboard instead of sliding down a gutter?

She stumbled like a newly-born fawn and gave her eyes a thorough rub, pausing to examine a crumb that came out of one of them.

Full-body warmth was a memory, I smelled like a buck in musk, and our family . . . our family was gone. Forever. Our father hadn’t kept us safe.

dimples in her elbows and tender, boneless hands that had popped out of her sweater sleeves like white trilliums.

Drinkwaters pop up like mushrooms after a spring rain, that seems a fair way of putting it.”

He was long and lean like a weasel, topped by a pair of respectably solid shoulders. He carried his weapons as if he were ready to use them. He was a man one could look to for protection.

“Shot?” My voice rose. “Shot like an arrow? Rifles shoot something?”
“Aye lass, they do.” He bowed his head. “I see we’ve a lot to talk about.”

A smile flashed across his face like heat lightning snaking across the sky.

The light was bad, and the two of them were twined like snakes in heat, but I had to make the shot.

odd currents and bits of breeze brought the spray to me, to settle like cold fairy tears on my felted sweater and matted hair

He clutched the knife’s handle so tightly that his knuckles stood out white. White, and sharp. Like claws.

His upper lip was shaped like a recurve bow; it had a down-point in the center and a delicate but definite curve up at each corner

She lifted her eyebrows, making her whole face crease like a candle burned on the tilt.

She lifted her face to him like a baby bird, eyes closed, one skeletal hand on his forearm in an attitude of perfect trust.

; they careened about the room like a pair of storks playing three-legged-race.

I felt like a cream puff stuffed into a waterskin.

“You’re peaked and off your feed, yet you’re swelling like a midsummer melon; also falling asleep half the time, and crabbit the rest.”

He lifted his eyes to mine; they were starry and hard, brittle like rock crystal. His thumbs dug into my palms. “Let her go.”

I examined him in the window’s profuse daylight. His cheeks were inflamed and deeply scarred. His Adam’s apple stuck out like a deer’s hoof.

I was nearly sick on the spot but, head rocking like tree limbs in a gale, I stayed upright long enough to walk through the doors.

My heart hammered like a woodpecker. “Why do you want to marry me?”

“Aye.” The word was heavy and dark; it sank into my womb like a stone into deep water. “Certainly if you marry me I’ll make my way to your bed.”

His eyes softened like shadows on snowcaps, and his nostrils dented with the depth of an uninterpretable emotion.

I had felt regal when Cat first pinned the skirt onto me. Now I felt like a dumb doll, dressed and petted and useless.

Her lips puckered, and her brows pushed into mistrustful folds like an old dog’s jowls.

Looking over my shoulder, and feeling much like a mouse raiding a cupboard, I slipped inside.

“Have you lost interest?”
My head fell like a collared horse’s. “I haven’t lost interest, no.”

The Ward looked like a drowned cat. Carved wooden ornaments glistened with half-frozen rain.

One bit of unrest feeds on another. They gather up like iron filings on a magnet, growing heavier and hotter until they make a great ruddy sword.

Wordless, I opened my hand to stroke the wiry softness of his beard. He rubbed his cheek against it like a giant cat.

The aisle ended in a grove of blooming dogwood. Pink and white blossoms fell like snow to pave the ground beneath. Malcolm stood in the middle of it.

A band of old scar tissue, puckered but no longer discolored, ran all around his left shoulder like a coiled rope thrown over his arm

the high-shouldered moment in which he had spilled himself into me and I had lain still, like a kitten held by the scruff of the neck

The wardrobe seemed hung with ghosts, the table cluttered with murderer’s weapons.

“Aye. You buzz about my ear when I’m trying to sleep, driving me mad.” He made a high-pitched whining noise, exactly like a mosquito in flight. “And then I slap you.”

Malcolm’s eyes stretched wider, like a hunter who has sighted prey. “Were you afraid of him?”

our bodies pop into this world like mushrooms out of a fallen log, and after a while they fade. But our spirits are always there underneath

His arms folded like ancient roots, holding me secure, protected from the creeping world outside.

He ripped the front of my blouse open, sending buttons popping like grasshoppers into the sheet-folds.

Whipping his back like a lizard’s tail, he positioned himself for entry and clasped my neck to hold me still.

Afterward we fell apart like the halves of a lightning-struck tree. When I was able to move I turned my head to look at him, on his back beside me, glistening with shed frustration.

He snatched a rush dip and set to shaving the tallow away with his thumbnail. Tiny white curls fell to the floor like snow.

My lungs swept shut like a book. Every fiber of me wanted to cling to him.

It wasn’t blooming yet, but its pink blossoms swelled like fairies’ tongues.

The whiskey in the decanter looked like poison, and the window . . . the small window, protected with iron bars . . . gave it the air of a prison.

I creak like a windmill for a week every time I come up here, and Buck’s poison’s the worst thing for it.

My nerves lit up like a bonfire, they glowed like fireflies, they pulsed with color like butterfly wings. This was all right. No, this was great.

He looked like an exotic buzzard eyeing a piece of carrion.

Two more bounced off his chest. Then another one hit his face. He shook his head like a stung stallion.

Flecks of spittle flew off their jaws like feathers off a shaken chicken.

He halted so abruptly I had to dig my moccasins into the squashy loam, sending my baskets swinging like ripe cherries.

I felt like a small dog yapping and jumping at his heels, but the blasted man wouldn’t slow down.

The relief of the words felt like a cup of warm water being poured down the back of my neck.

The cold wetness of Malcolm’s clothes contrasted with his roasting heat, and he shook like a newborn kitten.

He leaned on me so heavily that his nose squashed against my jaw and my shoulder dug into his breastbone. I giggled; it was like being examined by an over-friendly, and very large, goat.

His weight rested on his knuckles, which were turned slightly inward, making him look for all the world like a real bear

He stretched both fists into the air and gave out a groan like a rutting buck.

Though I trembled like aspen leaves before rain, I nocked and aimed. Breeze kissed my forehead. We were downwind of the buck

I ran my fingers up and down the shiny green length of cane. Heat from the campfire brought moisture out of it, making it glisten like a frog’s back.

The hairs on my head rose like cats’ whiskers, feeling the canopy for watching eyes.

A trail of glistening bright blood ran from the cut beneath his chin, ending in a pendulous ruby drop that clung to his chest like a gem.

I sat on my bottom again and extended the appendage in question. He snatched it out of the air like a lightning bug.

The cave’s floor rocked like water. A hand pushed on my elbow; it helped me sit down safely, and put my head between my knees.

. Inside we toe-felt our way along the uneven floor toward another, faraway torch that glimmered like a firefly at midnight.

The walls were covered in sparkling curtains of minerals that ran and dripped like candle wax

I used the back of her shirt to throw her head-first into the crevice, like a nanny goat into a milking pen.

She was spread-eagled in the little crevice like a spider on its web. Her mouth opened and closed while she thought about it.

The men muttered knowingly. Outside our ledge the rain picked up, hissing like a kettle on the boil.

His high nose and piled dreadlocks made him look like a curious raptor, cocking its head this way and that.

The rose briars embraced him like an amorous yeti, and must have scratched like one too

Cutter was collapsed on the ground against a house, looking like a pile of dirty washing. His face was pinched in agony.

“Medicine wouldn’t bring the hand back. I can still feel it, like it’s buried in sand.”

Dana puffed up like an excited turkey. “It’s an honor to meet you.”

He gawped like a hooked bass. “Mine?”


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