Samples of metaphor and simile

Seamus Cooney

Your turn:

Now some examples for you to decide on. The choices are (a) simile, (b) metaphor, (c) neither. You can test yourself by noting your choice for each example, and when you've finished following the link to the answers at the bottom of this page.

  1. I wandered lonely as a cloud
    That floats on high o'er vale and hill

  2. Crossing the street,
    I saw the parents and the child
    At their window, gleaming like fruit
    With evening's mild gold leaf.

  3. The Soul selects her own Society --
    Then shuts the door -- ...

  4. Love a child is ever criing,
    Please him, and hee straite is flying,
    Give him hee the more is craving
    Never satisfi'd with having ...

  5. That time of year thou mayest in me behold
    When yellow leaves, or none, or few do hang
    Upon those boughs which shake against the cold ...

  6. The Curfew tolls the knell of parting day ...

  7. When my mother died I was very young ...

  8. O Rose, thou art sick.

  9. Be near me when my light is low ...

  10. The sea is calm tonight.
    The tide is full ...

  11. An aged man is but a paltry thing,
    A tattered cloak upon a stick ...

  12. As if he had been poured
    in tar, he lies
    on a pillow of turf
    and seems to weep

    the black river of himself.
Authors: Wordsworth, James Merrill, Dickinson, Lady Mary Wroth, Shakespeare, Gray, Blake (twice), Tennyson, Arnold, Yeats, Seamus Heaney.

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