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I saw the dead rising from the hill

The sea was sleeping soundly as usual

Before the shadows crept to its shore.

I just wrote the above verses and I was wondering if the sea can represent my mind instead of another person, and I am also wondering if it can represent myself instead of another person.

I saw the dead rising from the hill

The trees were sleeping soundly as usual

Before the shadows crept to the forest.

Here is a similar example. I was wondering if the "trees" can represent something else than other people? Can it represent my own self even if it's in plural? Any similar example from renowned author? I don't want to abuse artistic license to do whatever I want unless it has been done before by famous writers.

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If you want the sea to represent your mind, maybe use something like "My sea of thoughts". Using sea of thoughts without telling it is "yours" will refer to someone else's mind or a collective of people. Same goes for the trees. You can say something like "The trees of my forest". Once you refer to your forest, it can be meant they are representing a part of you.

I have written similar songs in Hebrew about a friend who died in a car accident and I used a chopped tree to represent her life.

I don't want to abuse artistic license to do whatever I want unless it has been done before by famous writers.

Everything has already been done before you. No one did it exactly as you did. Also, unless it is some special name, for example, Stormlight, you can use whatever you want. No one owns regular sentences in the English language.

  • Can you tell me if there's any baggage that comes with personification? What are the things I can do or not do with it in order to improve the answer? – repomonster Feb 3 at 14:38
  • What do you mean by 'baggage'? Does baggage refer to how it makes people feel? – Oren_C Feb 3 at 14:41
  • Limitations or things that I need to take in consideration in order to use it properly. – repomonster Feb 3 at 14:45
  • Well, limitations and considerations are fiction in the context of writing. There will always be someone who won't like what you write. So you can't define a limitation. Otherwise, there is a general rule of thumb that people can be triggered by reading explicit materials. You may want to consider that when writing. – Oren_C Feb 3 at 14:50
  • By limitations I meant rules that most writers abide by. – repomonster Feb 3 at 14:52
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Anthropomorphism is extremely common in many cultures around the world, and in older work in the European tradition. It's currently out-of-favor in modern European and American literature because it represents a spiritual, animist view of the universe that clashes with the dominant materialist worldview.

There's really no reason to not use this in poetry, which tends to be very individualistic. It would be unusual, but not unheard of in prose fiction (for instance, Kleinzeit), and typically frowned upon in mainstream prose non-fiction.

Using descriptive passages to illuminate aspects of the narrator or narrator's mindset is quite common, and while it isn't commonly done in this particular way, there's no reason it couldn't be.

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