If you want to learn how to write memorable, surprising images that will make readers think, followed by a sharp intake of breath, read Tomas Transtromer. Here are four examples from The Deleted World collection, and then one from The Great Enigma.
A storm from the north. It is the time of rowanberries.
Awake in the night he hears – far above the horned tree –
the stars, stamping in their stalls.
The child’s eyes grow wide in the dark
and the storm howls for him.
Both love the swinging lamps;
both are halfway towards speech.
The house feels its own constellation of nails
holding the walls together.
The tugboat is freckled with rust. What is it doing so far inland?
It’s a heavy burnt-out lamp, tipped over in the cold.
In day's first hours consciousness can grasp the world
as the hand grips a sun-warmed stone.
Of course, seeing how it's done doesn't necessarily make it any easier to do by oneself...