shaped and scented


Chinese - China
I wonder if it isn’t obliquely connected to the way I write my fiction, in which, say, a doormat in an apartment I lived in years ago will reappear, just as it once was, that exact doormat, same warp and weft, and yet I can’t say when exactly I lived there, who I was dating or even if my father was alive or dead at the time. Perhaps the first kind of non-memory system – the one that can’t retain dates or significant events – allows the other kind of memory system to operate, the absence of the first making space for the second, clearing a path for that whatever-it-is which seems to dart through my mind like a shy nocturnal animal, dragging back strange items like doormats, a single wilted peony, or a beloved strawberry sticker, not seen since 1986, but still shaped like a strawberry and scented like one, too.

(From Life-writing by Zadie Smith)

Why is past tense used here? I think it is because the author recalled the beloved strawberry sticker when she was writing her fiction. Am I right?
  • PaulQ

    Senior Member
    English - England

    To shape: "The letter 'S' is shaped like a snake." -> the agent is unstated.

    but they are still shaped like a strawberry = but they still have a shape like a strawberry - Their shape is similar to a strawberry.

    I suppose that "shaped like a strawberry" is the complement and is adjectival.
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