variable and permanent adjectives, related to same object

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lady_blue_

Member
Spanish native
I need to know if this sentence makes sense and it transmits the meaning I intend to communicate:


These are overbearing, sometimes desolate, violent, moments in which the sun explodes through a hidden darkness; hanging, suspended in a land where time seems to have stopped.


These are overbearing moments, but sometimes desolate, sometimes violent, or both, in which the sun... (but it doesn't sound so right if I say sometimes twice. If I use or, it sounds like one excludes the other, and if I don't use a comma after violent, it would mean they're always violent, but optionally desolate)


I know it's thinking too much, maybe a bit too perfectionist, but if anyone sympathises and wants to help...


Thank you!
 
  • Madrid829

    Senior Member
    US English, Great Lakes area
    You could say something like:

    These are overbearing, sometimes desolate, sometimes violent, moments in which...
    These are overbearing, sometimes desolate and sometimes violent, moments in which...
    These are overbearing, sometimes desolate, other times violent, moments in which...
    These are overbearing, sometimes desolate and other times violent, moments...
     

    pacadansc

    Senior Member
    English
    These are overbearing, sometimes desolate, violent, moments in which the sun explodes through a hidden
    darkness; hanging, suspended in a land where time seems to have stopped.
    These are overbearing moments, but sometimes desolate, sometimes violent, or both, in which the sun... (but
    it doesn't sound so right if I say sometimes twice. If I use or, it sounds like one excludes the other, and if I don't
    use a comma after violent, it would mean they're always violent, but optionally desolate)
    You could try something like:
    These are overbearing moments, sometimes desolate, at times violent, in which ...
     

    Thomas Tompion

    Senior Member
    English - England
    I need to know if this sentence makes sense and it transmits the meaning I intend to communicate:


    These are overbearing, sometimes desolate, violent, moments in which the sun explodes through a hidden darkness; hanging, suspended in a land where time seems to have stopped.


    These are overbearing moments, but sometimes desolate, sometimes violent, or both, in which the sun... (but it doesn't sound so right if I say sometimes twice. If I use or, it sounds like one excludes the other, and if I don't use a comma after violent, it would mean they're always violent, but optionally desolate)


    I know it's thinking too much, maybe a bit too perfectionist, but if anyone sympathises and wants to help...


    Thank you!
    Hello Lady Blue,

    I don't think you should worry about saying sometimes twice, because doing so can create a sequence which is often an agreeable trait in written English: the problem for me is the fact that we have to say sometimes X, sometimes Y, and sometimes both - an idea which is hard to convey without a tangled sentence. Apart from this problem I'd go for the first of Madrid's suggestions:
    These are overbearing, sometimes desolate, sometimes violent, moments in which...

    I wonder about placing the variable adjectives after the noun, as pacadansc suggests: These are overbearing moments, sometimes desolate, sometimes violent, sometimes both, in which... (notice I don't think you need the and before both)

    If you worry, as I might, that this is beginning to sound a bit like Proust, I'd end the sentence at both, and turn the reflexive clause into a new sentence - that would work, I think, but it's not entirely necessary.
     

    lady_blue_

    Member
    Spanish native
    Thank you all so much for getting so involved, all options are really good, so now I'll see which one fits better. Thanks again for your help! :)
     
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