Sitting at the bar?

My family is nothing like
owning a junkyard
Nah. It’s more like sneaking
into one after dark
like teens looking
for an abandoned back seat.
Maybe trying to salvage
a broken heart with spare parts.

Watch out for the snarling dog,
which is to say, my father.

—by Taylor Mali, ©2022

Welcome to Metaphor Dice!

Metaphor Dice were invented in 2016 by poet and educator Taylor Mali to help writers of all levels think and write more figuratively. The RED dice are all concepts, ideas, or complex subjects that might need to be explained with the help of a metaphor. The BLUE dice are the objects, the things that are more tangible, understandable, or humbler. The WHITE dice are just adjectives.

The basic idea is that you roll all the dice, then pick out three and arrange them red white and blue so that they suggest a metaphor like the one above. You will likely have to supply a verb and a couple of other small words. Feel free to modify the metaphor with the addition of the words NOT, NEVER, or USED TO BE. Another useful phrase to take you to the next line is which is to say.

Roll the dice. Write a line or two of poetry. Now drink. Take a photo of your roll and post it to social media using #MetaphorDice and be sure to mention the bar you’re at. And if you figure out a way to keep score, send an email to info “at” metaphordice “dot” com.

Directions & Downloads

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Download a sheet of blank pages from the Metaphor Pad (useful for tracking and sorting multiple explanations of the same metaphor).

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Download the original directions for Metaphor Dice here.