qms has looked up 10439 words, created 9 lists, listed 308 words, written 1571 comments, added 2 tags, and loved 78 words.

Comments by qms

  • Itinerant troubadors tired
    But gigs at the palace required
    They stake their ascents on
    A winnowing tenson,
    Before they were comfortably hired.

    August 26, 2016

  • Does random unreason triumphant
    Explain the party's entrumpment,
    Or is it the working
    Of illness long lurking
    Whose presence at last is erumpent?

    August 25, 2016

  • Too clever by half, it's been said,
    If subject and science aren't wed.
    So use plane geometry
    And not craniometry
    To measure a simple blockhead.

    August 24, 2016

  • The bawdy is narrative's fodder
    And broad jest its babbling water.
    Jongleurs had a go
    With hot fabliaux
    And we work the famed farmer's daughter.

    August 23, 2016

  • What pleasure in geck the Scots take!
    In insults that sting like a snake
    It's limmer they'll fetch
    (Or skellum) for "wretch,"
    But scroyle is much like a smaik.

    Here's a provocative thought:
    Scots insults suit Donald a lot,
    Perhaps this is merited
    By genes he inherited.
    His mom was an immigrant Scot.

    August 22, 2016

  • Strange demons, it may be, compel him;
    Some think mental illness befell him.
    I rather suspect
    A cruder affect:
    The Donald is simply a skellum.

    August 21, 2016

  • A rock hound when he is wistful
    dreams gemstones garnered by fistful,
    And rock turned to prism
    By pleochroism -
    The trick of a magical crystal.

    August 20, 2016

  • The commonplace may hold truth's kernel
    And point the way to things supernal,
    So follow that arrow
    From a red wheelbarrow
    Or raise your eyes from Duchamp's urinal.

    August 19, 2016

  • Some cock may presume he's exec
    With general permission to peck
    But strutting your stuff
    May not be enough
    When the flock is aflutter with geck.

    August 18, 2016

  • A sailor who finds where he's at
    Adjusts to the long and the lat;
    Astronomers though
    To check any flow
    Will stick with a strict coelostat.

    August 17, 2016

  • Note that coelostat is pronounced "seal-o-stat" as in coelacanth or coeliac disease.

    August 17, 2016

  • When daylight's begun its decline
    And darkness is poured out like wine
    Our lusty young braves
    Like bats from their caves
    Emerge for the hunt vespertine.

    August 16, 2016

  • A trickster betrays his sly aim
    Assailing his foe without shame.
    To charge voting fraud
    In no way seems odd
    From one who has played the skin-game.

    August 15, 2016

  • Cosmologists peer far and wide,
    Putting issues of history aside.
    To hypermetropics
    Such trivial topics
    Are less than their minds can abide.

    August 14, 2016

  • His speeches can only fleece hicks
    Who'll swallow his dreary sleaze mix.
    They haven't a prayer —
    This snake oil purveyor
    Is famed as a thorough skeezicks.

    August 13, 2016

  • See vol-au-vent.

    August 13, 2016

  • "Gregarious" hints at a commonness,
    "Egregious", however's, more ominous.
    The first is preferred
    As part of the herd
    But, cousins, the words are paronymous.

    August 12, 2016

  • We've learned of our ancestors' yearning
    In scholarship subtly discerning
    Called archaeoastronomy,
    While paleoeconomy
    Is knowledge of primitive earning.

    August 11, 2016

  • Democracy's cycles are prone
    To flaws that the sages bemoan:
    Slick dealers hijack
    The passionate pack
    And try to elect a ladrone.

    August 10, 2016

  • My goodness! How do they say this in Hobart? Frafft? Frackit?
    Go to the site pasted below and hear some audio examples.


    It must be the effect of hanging bat-like from the bottom of the planet.

    August 10, 2016

  • Some private exchanges are fraught
    As innocent converse is not.
    In voices that collogue
    Hear treachery's prologue,
    The reptilian hiss of a plot.

    August 9, 2016

  • A vegan embraces fruitation
    With many a happy potation —
    A sovereign cure
    For all that's impure
    And slayer of cruel constipation.

    August 9, 2016

  • See comments at nutation.

    August 8, 2016

  • Hunting rhymes for "nutation" I looked into the legitimacy of "fruitation" and was disappointed to find that what little attention it draws is scorn as an unsophisticated stand-in for "fruition". This is too bad. I like the word and think that it nicely evokes an image of a tree laden with ripened fruit.

    We have a mulberry tree that, at midsummer when its branches droop with the weight of berries, is visited by crowds of birds, squirrels, chipmunks, etc., and cats in pursuit of the wild creatures. Even on windless days the tree pulsates as though palsied. Thus,

    The mulberry tree in fruitation
    Is swayed by a great disputation
    As critters at odds
    Cause tremors and nods
    And days of a steady nutation.

    I think fruitation works just fine here. For that matter nutation could just as well be applied in season to oaks or walnuts to describe both their abundance and their behavior:
    A language improves by mutation
    Producing delights like fruitation,
    Like saplings new-born
    From acorns wind-torn
    From oak trees that bend with nutation.

    August 8, 2016

  • The lamp of sweet reason grows dimmer
    And decency's quite gone aglimmer.
    He sucks up the light
    And brings on the night.
    The man is lout and a limmer.

    August 7, 2016

  • Amid the political moil
    Republicans strive to be loyal,
    But this sorry fettle
    Will sure test their mettle,
    For Jumbo has spawned them a scroyle.

    August 6, 2016

  • We scurry in fortune's fierce race
    Till age makes us slacken the pace.
    We cease being rovers
    And guard our estovers
    And hope that we fade with some grace.

    August 5, 2016

  • Ety. note: Old French estover, estovoir, subst. use of estovoir to be necessary. (OED)

    August 5, 2016

  • Damn! I was hoping it was the study of armpits.
    See axillary.

    August 4, 2016

  • Does an incestuous furvert in heat do a furgent search among her furkin?

    August 4, 2016

  • The heat of the day can be cruel.
    We swelter and yearn to be cool,
    To sip a cold drink
    And watch the sun sink
    And soak in the sweet crepuscule.

    August 4, 2016

  • Greetings mohsin. I hope you will enjoy the experience.

    August 3, 2016

  • Our Ernest knows Wordnik's a tool
    To facet a phrase like a jewel.
    What does he mean really
    By calling you seely?
    Is saint what he names you-or fool?

    Find out more about Ernest Bafflewit

    August 3, 2016

  • A crafty pol should be a pickthank.
    When voters send an impolitic blank
    His career's not demolished;
    The apples he's polished
    Will land him a post in a think tank.

    August 2, 2016

  • While I am a tilting toddler in Wordnik years I am a shambling mutterer in terms of sun orbits. You Wordie veterans have amazingly rich lists. I put together a few lists to collect the lovely words I don't want to forget. Then I forget the lists. I still don't understand what tags do.

    August 2, 2016

  • The nature of humans is murky.
    Our moods make our preferences quirky.
    Who one day beguiles
    With laughter and smiles
    The next is a tedious birkie.

    August 1, 2016

  • Perhaps the cold grip of mortmain
    Or Olympian gods who ordain
    That men through the ages
    Indulge their wild rages
    Disposed to be always war-fain.

    July 31, 2016

  • When casting with fly fishing tackle
    The novice who has not the knack'll
    Find that such angling
    Is deeply entangling
    And wind up impaled and hamshackled.

    July 30, 2016

  • He fondled each farthing and ducat
    Before dropping them into his bucket.
    The comforting sound
    As they rattled around
    To him was both nocturne and tucket.

    July 29, 2016

  • Not like that repellent damn sham
    That callously plays with "wham bam,"
    But just helter-skelter,
    An innocent welter.
    There's nought to offend in ram-stam.

    July 28, 2016

  • A pussy foot can be an omen -
    Remember ex ungue leonem.
    The essence of Trump's
    Expressed in those stumps.
    Let Pussy become his cognomen.

    July 27, 2016

  • ex ungue leonem: from the claw (we may judge of) the lion : from a part we may judge of the whole.

    July 27, 2016

  • When hungry how low will we stoop
    Our dwindling strength to recoup?
    A bowl of panada
    Is better than nada.
    If need be I'll eat some bread soup.

    July 27, 2016

  • 'screenwalking = walking along looking at your cellphone with no attention to what's going on around you.

    Credit to KAR201245.

    July 27, 2016

  • The gnomes are not fauna nor flora
    But gardens are blessed by their aura.
    Their magic potential
    May not be essential
    But some find them charmingly orra.

    July 26, 2016

  • His small talking skills being wayward
    He chattered at times like a jaybird.
    For marital peace
    His babble would cease
    If she uttered the pre-arranged nayword.

    July 25, 2016

  • The best way I know how to heal
    A pestilent rash popliteal
    Is immersing your knees
    As hot as you please
    Applying the cure-all balneal.

    July 24, 2016

  • From Wikipedia:
    "A gabion (from Italian gabbione meaning "big cage"; from Italian gabbia and Latin cavea meaning "cage") is a cage, cylinder, or box filled with rocks, concrete, or sometimes sand and soil for use in civil engineering, road building, military applications and landscaping."

    See these employed with increasing frequency in retaining walls along roads and highways.

    July 24, 2016

  • Young ladies in crinoline gownage
    Refrained from riparian clownage
    Else they might have slid
    As Ophelia did
    To prolonged, if picturesque, drownage.

    July 23, 2016

  • A gossip can never be dilatory
    But eagerly hastes to spill a story
    And endlessly natters
    Of such shocking matters
    As subtle transgressions habilatory.

    July 22, 2016

  • See lights in the Levantine gloam
    As linkboys scamper for home.
    The torches glow bright
    In encroaching night
    At the end of a long lampadrome.

    Also see comments at lampadedromy.

    July 21, 2016

  • As gods will not deign to eat meat
    Your slender amour spurns a sweet.
    It's not hypocritic
    But idolothytic
    To give her your favorite treat.

    July 20, 2016

  • Crude youngsters employ a crass trick
    To replicate trumpetings gastric,
    While I, for my part,
    Can hear in no fart
    A note in the least bit gelastic.

    July 19, 2016

  • Something to do with the way the Wordnik compiler processes quotation marks. I will ponder.

    July 19, 2016

  • Much given to fretting his gizzard
    Doubts swirl like the flakes of a blizzard.
    When Percy must vote
    Cold fear grips his throat -
    Well-meaning but sadly a dizzard.

    July 18, 2016

  • At the entry for gizzard the Century supplies, "n. Figuratively, temper: now only in the phrase to fret one's gizzard." The "now" reference is to 1914. The expression is new to me and I like it. This is a fossil that deserves reanimation.

    July 18, 2016

  • As fairies and elves have their homes
    Why do we neglect our poor gnomes?
    Why can we not harden
    The roof of the garden
    And give them simulacradromes?

    July 18, 2016

  • What rara avis bizarrely fluorescent
    Assails us with crowing incessant?
    It's only the rumpus
    Of brass-pated trumpus
    Who struts in his plumage fulvescent.

    July 17, 2016

  • Whether Brassens or Dylan or Brel
    They draw from the same woeful well
    For each balladmonger
    Affects pallid longueur.
    What unhappy tales they do tell.

    July 16, 2016

  • Though old the tycoon isn't done yet,
    But keeps on his staff young Yvette,
    Who's sufficiently lewd
    To preserve celsitude
    On the oligarch's personal jet.

    July 15, 2016

  • "Late capitalism" is a term used by neo-Marxists to refer to capitalism from about 1945 onwards, with the implication that it is a historically limited stage rather than an eternal feature of all future human society. This period includes the era termed the golden age of capitalism.


    July 14, 2016

  • Purportedly an Irishism, but I find only one dictionary entry (the Century), one usage example (the Carleton novel) and no pronunciation guidance.

    An insult is what it's about,
    A bold contumelious shout.
    Should I give a hoot
    If it rhymes with galoot
    Or assume that the word is keout?

    July 14, 2016

  • A master of matters iatric
    If blessed with some talent theatric
    And good looks to boot
    Can scoop up some loot
    In scoring the tv doc hat trick.

    July 13, 2016

  • See itinerant.

    July 13, 2016

  • Forsooth, fulsome praise, as thou sayest,
    Could go to a clever essayist;
    But prithee bestow it
    On some soaring poet
    And not a mere plodding prosaist.

    July 12, 2016

  • A daze? stupefaction?

    July 11, 2016

  • Let a thirst build at first then attack it.
    A beer is improved while you lack it.
    The drier you get
    The more the beer's wet
    And cooler the flanks of the flacket.

    July 11, 2016

  • Ignite a spark by useful friction
    With symmetry in contradiction.
    Inspire or perturb
    By a clever diverb -
    An ancient tool of formal diction.

    July 10, 2016

  • For spuds and for meat he's voracious
    But Grandad makes haste to turn gracious
    And claim he is sated
    If it's intimated
    The next dish could be alliaceous.

    July 9, 2016

  • In Cleveland they'll mime nonchalance
    For cocksureness' vraisemblance.
    Despite a brave show
    At heart they must know
    The exercise is a totentanz.

    July 8, 2016

  • I read your response and I wince.
    I paid him and have not heard since.
    You give me a fright
    But It must be all right;
    He told me (aside) he’s a prince.

    July 7, 2016

  • A courtier with little shame feigns
    He's smitten by royal plain janes.
    He'll hint at hot bliss
    To a credulous miss
    But give her no more than baisemains.

    July 7, 2016

  • A general of Rome grown irate
    In heat may incline to decimate,
    Or soothed by the touch
    Of one he loves much
    Relent and benignly centesimate.

    July 6, 2016

  • In my high school Latin class I learned that decimation was a punishment in which one of every ten members of a disgraced legion or other military unit was bludgeoned to death by the other nine. The idea made a deep impression on me. The word seems, however, to be more commonly used to mean "utterly destroy." The common usage has always grated on my ear because the word so loudly proclaims its root in the number ten.

    Perhaps the more general application has come about because it sounds so much like "devastate." Something similar could happen to centesimate, which by its sound suggests a sensitivity to pheromones. It could come to describe mating behavior, as in, "I can tell by the tomcats' yowling that a female has been centesimated."

    July 6, 2016

  • There is nothing I would enjoy more than a visit to Australia and the pleasure of kindly, witty company. At present I am awaiting the cash part of the Nobel Prize for Limericks, which a nice man from Nigeria assured me will follow promptly on the processing of my fees. As soon as that comes through I'll be on my way. You'll know I'm coming if you listen at night by the Alimentation Station:

    I loathe to promote hysterical games
    But cock an ear for chimerical trains.
    Midst whistles and clatter
    And such ghostly matter
    You'll faintly catch limerical strains.

    July 6, 2016

  • Should antipodeans assail ya
    Your virtue may nothing avail ya.
    Oh beware, my darling!
    There's danger of farling
    In all the rough parts of Australia.

    July 5, 2016

  • Isn't bearjam what you find between your toes after walking barefoot in the woods?

    July 5, 2016

  • While shunning is painfully felt,
    A tradesman must work with what's dealt.
    Though no one smells stronger
    Than a busy fellmonger
    It's the price that is paid for the pelt.

    July 5, 2016

  • At mid-day they pander abjectly;
    By twilight they cry out "elect me!"
    But shrill pleas are drowned
    By sight and the sound
    Of Fourth of July pyrotechny.

    July 4, 2016

  • Alas, the degenerate levels
    They reach in their unseemly revels!
    Hear the tormented screech
    Of abused parts of speech
    In the jaws of Tasmanian devils!

    July 4, 2016

  • Befuddlement makes me quite frantic.
    The migraine I get is gigantic.
    I sadly confess
    I feel this distress
    While struggling to grasp "apophantic."

    July 3, 2016

  • You fill it with lean meat or suet
    And call it a mortress or chewet,
    But if crust enfold it
    So that you can hold it
    It's pie any way you construe it.

    July 2, 2016

  • The walls of the cold palace spell
    The distance the old family fell.
    Their misery's told
    In Gobelins sold
    And hung in their place, brocatel.

    July 1, 2016

  • Let not Aussie customs perturb.
    Their scorn for the rules is superb;
    They brew up their crops
    Of barley and hops
    Then dare to use farl as a verb.

    July 1, 2016

  • A piece of an oatcake for sure
    Is more than this scribe can endure!
    I'm stymied by 'farl'
    'Cause dressing up 'harl'
    Has left me no rhymes to procure.

    See comments at harl, which was Word of the Day May 24, 2014.

    June 30, 2016

  • How long should the shadow of youth last
    And when shed the shame of uncouth past?
    From miscreant young
    There often have sprung
    Grown men who are noble and soothfast.

    June 29, 2016

  • If challenged to poems at dawn
    Let doubting be banished and gone.
    Your foe cannot strike you
    If he's armed with haiku
    And you have your limerick drawn.

    June 28, 2016

  • A memorable tiffin gives joy
    From the delicate gear you deploy.
    It's always more swank
    If the tea that you drank
    Was served from a little teapoy.

    June 28, 2016

  • Contemplative, maybe? Or constitutionalist?

    June 28, 2016

  • The conscience patrols and polices
    But nonetheless sin never ceases.
    If we're to evolve
    The change must involve
    Updating our old synderesis.

    June 27, 2016

  • A lifetime of bills in arrear
    Trump paints as a golden career!
    For avid bullshitters
    It's not gold that glitters
    But polished brass mythopoeia.

    June 26, 2016

  • This is one of those words that is pronounced in starkly different fashion on opposite sides of the Atlantic. In England the word rhymes with Ethiopia; in the U.S. It rhymes with gonorrhea.

    June 26, 2016

  • Patricia takes many a liberty,
    Is flippant and nipperty-tipperty.
    Will nothing inhibit
    This flibbertigibbet,
    So impishly perky and flirty?

    June 25, 2016

  • Intending a light and fluffy show
    I came across as stuffy though.
    Please pardon my folly.
    I aimed to be jolly
    But struck, it seems, too rough a blow.

    June 25, 2016

  • Romance is afloat on the breeze,
    That highway of birds and the bees.
    Miasmic panmixia
    Is lovers' asphyxia.
    A coupling that's random can't please.

    June 24, 2016

  • Now, bilby, I weary of guff you throw.
    This really is more than enough, you know.
    I haven't the time
    To search for a rhyme
    For something as silly as Gruffalo.

    June 24, 2016

  • There's much that a spa can instill:
    Cold showers can stiffen the will;
    Applying euthenics
    Can calm the splenetics,
    While mud baths cure many an ill.

    June 23, 2016

  • When Ernest was young and in school
    The boy was a nerd en capsule.
    Since one of his whims
    Was strange synonyms
    A seesaw he'd call a bascule.

    Find out more about Ernest Bafflewit

    June 22, 2016

  • One's work and nutrition do battle
    So breakfast each morning's a caddle
    Or, too rushed to grapple,
    We pocket an apple
    And, thwarted again, we skedaddle.

    June 21, 2016

  • I see little of Brexit in Texit
    It's only the sound that connects it.
    The most they can muster
    Is boasting and bluster.
    From Texans one simply expects it.

    June 21, 2016

  • I ask as it's colder and wetter
    If heat or more clothing is better?
    As per my last gas bill
    I'll buy a wraprascal
    To wind around me in my sweater.

    June 20, 2016

  • In case the depiction elude us:
    I think the old crone is construed as
    A termagant hag,
    A shrewish old bag,
    A harridan Scott calls a rudas.

    June 19, 2016

  • A bloke with no fisticuffs skill
    Can have his vicarious thrill
    And use boxiana
    In safe proxy manner
    To imagine he's king of the hill.

    June 18, 2016

  • Some folks with Highlandish tilts
    Affect rather outlandish lilts
    But nurse an aversion
    To whole Scots conversion
    By dressing in two-legged skilts.

    June 17, 2016

  • Still warm from the oven and fresh
    A new loaf heals spirit and flesh.
    Succumb to the spell
    Of crust like a shell
    And crumb that is fragrant and nesh.

    June 16, 2016

  • Compare lubritorium. This used to be a label commonly placed over gas station service bay doors when I was a kid - long, long ago.

    June 16, 2016

  • Continuing to reflect on the thin documentation for bourasque I am now thinking that most lexicographers who have considered the matter may have decided that its rare occurrences are simply instances of a French word misspelled.

    June 15, 2016

  • See comments at bourasque.

    June 15, 2016

  • According to the Golden Legend, an 11th century compendium of hagiography, three siblings prominent in the New Testament made their way to the South of France in the first century, AD. These were Martha, Mary (in this tale a conflation of Martha’s sister Mary and Mary Magdalen) and Lazarus, their brother who had been raised from the dead by Jesus. Pagans had set these three adrift on the Mediterranean in a boat with neither sail nor rudder but by miraculous intervention they landed safely near Marseille. There they set up shop as miracle workers.
    The region around the mouth of the Rhône river had long been ravaged by a fierce dragon called the Tarasque. With hymns and holy water Martha tamed the Tarasque and led it back to the village it had been terrorizing. The villagers killed the unresisting beast, regretted doing so, and as a token of their remorse renamed the village Tarascon.

    Traversing the Med's a tough task,
    Becalmed or else tossed by bourasque,
    And then you arrive
    Where locals connive
    To get you to tame the tarasque.

    June 15, 2016

  • I find bourasque defined only in Century and Collins. None of the other internet-accesible dictionaries (not even the OED) include it. However bourrasque (with a double ‘r’) is routinely included in French dictionaries where it is defined as a storm or a gust of wind. Google Translator renders it as squall. It is odd that it should have been borrowed into English with an altered spelling and then hardly ever used.

    June 15, 2016

  • Your definition makes sense, alexz, if the emphasis is put on a long 'a' for the middle syllable. If the emphasis is put on the first syllable it becomes the dinner bell in the ship's prison.

    June 15, 2016

  • Hot passion online's a safe tactic,
    Most outcomes are anticlimactic.
    So spew molten woo
    While knowing that you
    And she are no doubt allopatric.

    June 14, 2016

  • ruzuzu, weary of wretched Don's dreck,
    Resolved to kick ass and wreak heck.
    Her sly wry aspersions
    And animadversions
    Effectively wrang Herr Trump's neck.

    June 13, 2016

  • My wardrobe's omissions are several.
    They're things I don't own nor ever will:
    A cane and cravat
    A shiny top hat,
    Or buff-colored gloves made of cheveril.

    June 13, 2016

  • To give some cachet to a jacket
    That otherwise simply would lack it
    You can, if you choose,
    Say it's a vareuse.
    It's a ruse of the high fashion racket.

    June 12, 2016

  • Some oxen are known for their musk
    And narwhals are typed by the tusk.
    The sloth is a creature
    Whose defining feature
    Is being quite perfectly lusk.

    June 11, 2016

  • It is my understanding that alpargata and espadrille do share ancestry. The Wkipedia entry for Espadrille contains the following:

    The existence of this kind of shoes in Europe is documented since at least 1322, when they appear described for the first time with its current Catalan name.

    The term espadrille is French and derives from the word in the Occitan language, which comes from espardenya, in Catalan or alpargata and esparteña in Castilian/Spanish. Both espardenya and esparteña refer to a type of shoes made with esparto, a tough, wiry Mediterranean grass used in making rope. Its name in the Basque region is espartina.

    June 10, 2016

  • Throughout all the Catalan hills
    They're worn by who talks and who tills.
    Though all social strata
    May wear alpargata
    The well-born will say "espadrilles."

    June 10, 2016

  • Now bilby's strange lingo's all tangled,
    A mélange that's new and odd-fangled.
    I have to be frank -
    I'm drawing a blank;
    Methinks his bahasa's bemangled.

    June 10, 2016

  • Poor bilby, I say with respect,
    Ignores the French boat that was wrecked.
    For Javans descended
    From Frenchies upended
    The cabas is apt and correct.

    June 9, 2016

  • He seemed a hail fellow well met
    And offered his "last" cigarette
    He bought with his bonhomie
    A friend with economy
    For many "last" bide in his cellaret.

    June 9, 2016

  • The painting begins as blottesque
    The genius is found in what's next:
    There's vigorous rubbing
    (A furious drubbing!)
    Et voilà! Un chef-d'oeuvre frottesque!

    June 8, 2016

  • Since she is a baker and so's he
    The dough balls they start with are fozy.
    When the kneading is done
    And the rising begun
    They nestle together quite cozy.

    June 7, 2016

  • The shah loved his hairdo quite bushy
    And fondly protected his tushy.
    The settee he sat in
    On cushions of satin
    Was backed by a glorious pushti.

    June 7, 2016

  • This is a westernized village. (Picky, picky.)

    June 7, 2016

  • Pronunciation note: Sometimes the 's' is omitted. When present it is silent.

    June 6, 2016

  • When mountains blow up out in Java
    The villagers flee from the lava
    With the clothes on their backs,
    Some food in their packs,
    And each baby tucked in a cabas.

    June 6, 2016

  • According to the “Irish Slang” site (http://www.irishslang.info/roscommon/roscommon/latchico) it means: a lazy person, usually male.

    June 5, 2016

  • Our plans and ambitions are flimsy,
    Assembled from movies and whimsy,
    But the brutal banality
    Of dreamless reality
    Makes mock of cloud castles so slimsy.

    June 5, 2016

  • It was probably shunned by the herd.

    June 5, 2016

  • Ha! Good one, alexz, although it took me a while to realize that I was not getting an extremely bad review.

    June 4, 2016

  • The innocent pay simple court
    Not knowing that love is blood sport.
    Who enters those lists
    Expecting sweet trysts
    Soon finds they're engaged alamort.

    June 4, 2016

  • What hides in the syllable 'umble'
    That makes all its settings so humble?
    A tumble's a fall
    (But only if small)
    And a stumbling mumbler will drumble.

    June 3, 2016

  • For Puss in eternal cat rhythm
    Her last breath is no cataclysm,
    For soon she will rise
    Installed in night skies.
    Her next stage is catasterism.

    June 2, 2016

  • To shrink my unwelcome enormity
    And profit by healthful conformity
    On my bicycle ride
    The Fitbit's my guide,
    Reporting on crucial biometry.

    June 1, 2016

  • Your epic needs echoes Homeric;
    For thrillers use tough talk generic.
    If nonfiction's your game
    Then make it your aim
    Above all to be exoteric.

    May 31, 2016

  • A parable mates sundry pieces:
    The set-up we call diegesis,
    But all who are able
    To tinker a fable
    Will use it to prop up a thesis.

    May 30, 2016

  • It's all right Carolynsteiner. Don't mind bilby. Some of the nicest people I know fard.

    May 29, 2016

  • Our Ernest abroad keeps his hand in.
    There's never a word he'll abandon,
    Though it does seem a vagary
    To glean such as waragi -
    A word that's not ours but Ugandan.

    Find out more about Ernest Bafflewit

    May 29, 2016

  • How can you tell that an artist's work is selling fast?

    May 28, 2016

  • Since a cart may be open or closed
    Appropriate dress is supposed.
    If you take a whirlicote
    In Winter a burly coat
    Is worn by the rider well-clothed.

    May 28, 2016

  • Looks like a feeble borrowing of the "lesser of two weevils" joke from O'Brian's Aubrey/Maturin novels. Or is there something here too subtle for me?

    May 28, 2016

  • So now we know where Spamski gets those blocks of text, although I have to say that "Smoking of the lake..." is a less lively example than most.

    May 27, 2016

  • Greetings.

    May 27, 2016

  • No matter how clearly malignant
    The Trumpies think their man's benignant,
    But cite, if you dare,
    Preposterous hair
    And see them all rise up indignant.

    May 27, 2016

  • italicosis. - n. A noxious typographical infection by which characters once sturdy and upright are compelled to limp across the page bent like weary travelers fighting a strong East wind. Italics are like some medicines, such as Warfarin, which are beneficial in small amounts but deadly in quantity. Wordnik is struck by this malady from time to time when an infected comment is placed and the telltale rash is spread to all the text on the page below it. This is the result of a double error: first, failing to close the italics HTML markup and, second, failing to check the fresh entry in the context of the Community page to see if it is affecting its neighbors.

    Italics are good in small doses
    As means of directing the focus.
    But if they're unchecked
    The whole site is wrecked
    By rampaging italicosis.

    May 26, 2016

  • I shudder (I do hope genteelly)
    And ask myself, "Can it be, really?"
    I must trust the fairy
    Who answers my query:
    Quvenzhané's in no way Swahili.

    May 26, 2016

  • If you'd not be thought misanthropic
    Then hew to a course philosophic
    And look on your fellows,
    The whites, blacks and yellows,
    Alike with an eye that's scotopic.

    May 26, 2016

  • The Ship of State's rules can be dull;
    There's ballast that lards its deep hull.
    A certain percentage
    Is no more than kentledge
    And not worth the work to annul.

    May 25, 2016

  • His scorn for the lecture was utter.
    I heard the old fisherman mutter,
    "I'll heed that scientist fella
    And call the thing 'vellela,'
    But damned if I'll copy his stutter."

    May 25, 2016

  • In the lab curiosity fuels
    The use of unorthodox tools:
    We find that rotifera
    In juice of vinifera
    Are tasty wheel-animalcules.

    May 25, 2016

  • prosthesis

    May 24, 2016

  • When Missy awakes on dewy morns
    She spruces up her unicorns.
    Each ear, though of leather,
    She tops with a feather,
    Preferring her myths have plumicorns.

    May 24, 2016

  • The gamelan comes from Jakarta
    And Stockholm supplies nyckelharpa.
    When they jam together
    Regardless of weather
    They dress in sarong and a parka.

    May 23, 2016

  • Magna Carta

    May 23, 2016

  • From hearing that man on the stump
    I acquired a gut full of Trump.
    A healer examined me
    And dosed me with scammony
    For a purgative triumphant dump.

    May 22, 2016

  • I’m having a hard time finding pronunciation guidance on this one. The OED suggests what looks like a diphthong – wuh-oof. It’s Scottish of course, so it’s anybody’s guess.

    The Scots stay from good sense aloof,
    A word such as this is the proof.
    In Winter wits wilt
    From wearing a kilt
    And poor Jocks are driven quite wowf.

    May 21, 2016

  • The doc thought, "These symptoms are specious.
    This patient is being facetious
    Or hypochodriacal
    To a point near maniacal
    To claim such a strange anamnesis."

    May 20, 2016

  • When asked if the hairdo is nice
    Know truth can exact a high price.
    Dispense with your honor
    And heap praise upon her
    For timorous lies won't satisfice.

    May 19, 2016

  • To many a custom the South is heir
    But many are gone to thin air.
    No more are we blessed
    By the welcoming fest,
    Oh grieve for the vanished infare!

    May 18, 2016

  • Come shop at the market on rails
    And find a sure cure for what ails!
    Some babaganoush
    Will slim your caboose
    Or stoke up your boiler with kales.

    May 18, 2016

  • Alimentation Station

    May 18, 2016

  • Her lover may come as a guiser
    Obscured in a Carnival vizor,
    Concealing his visage
    From casual quizzage
    To intrigue and then to surprise her.

    May 17, 2016

  • A drum major's tool to commune
    And measure the beat of the tune
    Is a staff that is bladeless
    And part of parade dress
    But surely near kin to spontoon.

    May 16, 2016

  • To homeland their hearts do men afix
    In love confused by gender tricks.
    While perfectly glad
    That Patria's Dad
    The Motherland's their genitrix.

    May 15, 2016

  • The mustachioed lady's devotion
    Is testing each balm and each lotion.
    In hunting an aroph
    To take her lip hair off
    She'll try any alchemist's potion.

    May 14, 2016

  • Scared sailors in tempests desire
    An omen to calm and inspire
    And pray for a corposant
    To burn in the topgallant,
    The comfort of Saint Elmo's fire.

    May 13, 2016

  • From the definitions and examples provided it seems that among the beasts who may be called stot are: horse, stallion (aka staig), ox (aka stirk), bull, heifer (aka quey), calf, weasel, stoat.

    Pray tell if you can: what's a stot?
    It's most of the livestock we've got -
    A stirk or a quey
    Or a staig in it's way.
    It seems there's near nothing it's not.

    The definition as a verb is more appealing. It describes an amusing form of locomotion favored by young chamois, goats, lambs and the like in which they progress in an exuberant series of four-footed leaps. This is also known as pronking. YouTube abounds in videos of animals stotting or pronking.

    When creatures walk not as they ought
    But bound on all fours from a spot
    It's joy they announce
    With each silly bounce
    As ungulates happily stot.

    May 12, 2016

  • Rodin was a sculptor complete,
    Not least when he sat to excrete.
    That exquisite shaper
    Controlled so his taper
    That each of his turds was terete.

    May 11, 2016

  • Curiously the Word of the Day notification supplies the only definition of the five aggregated on the full entry page that omits mention of the "tapered at the ends" feature of terete structures.

    May 11, 2016

  • bilby flatters me outrageously - a practice I encourage at every opportunity. As to The Limerick King - self-anointed royals tread a perilous path:

    The "King" should eschew boastful ways.
    The rhyming gift visits but strays.
    We surely will stumble
    So, best we be humble
    And wait until others give praise.

    May 11, 2016

  • While some to bare hilltops aspire
    And others scale cliffs of desire,
    The sage wisely seeks
    The way between peaks
    And tranquilly travels the swire.

    May 10, 2016

  • True friendship must follow on latency -
    An interval promoting patency,
    For time and some trial
    Expose any guile.
    So bide for a while to wait and see.

    May 9, 2016

  • Should mantises on Noah's ark mate
    The male must embrace a stark fate:
    Only she will debark
    From that saving ark
    To rule in her matriarchate.

    N. b., I understand that current science teaches that the female praying mantis only sometimes eats her mate during copulation, but I have it on good authority that this was standard practice in Noah's day.

    May 8, 2016

  • Preserve me from neighbors obstreperous,
    And night squalls appallingly crepitous.
    My sleep, so hard won,
    Must not be undone
    By any disturbance or strepitus.

    May 7, 2016

  • For love-stricken Parisiennes
    The long fevered night finally ends,
    With limbs sweetly tangled
    In dawn light that's angled
    And stippled by closed persiennes.

    May 6, 2016

  • Thank you, bilby. You are generous and wise.

    May 6, 2016

  • A gaucho of taste adds vanilla
    Or soupçon of fine manzanilla
    And calls his maté,
    Thus rendered parfait,
    The best that has kissed a bombilla.

    May 5, 2016

  • A lion in murderous launch
    Sinks teeth in a wildebeest haunch.
    There's no tune that cheers
    The leonine ears
    More than the sound of that craunch.

    May 4, 2016

  • When peasants were gin-soaked and smelly
    The wagon was hitched to Old Nelly.
    The churls with the wobbles
    Were trundled 'cross cobbles
    While feeling the strike of each felly.

    May 3, 2016

  • And I think in some parts of Ireland words such as fierce and immerse would rhyme with scarce. This will require some thought. Meanwhile,

    I'll search for consonant pairs
    That work without putting on airs.
    Though maybe not crisp,
    If you have a lisp
    The rhymes are not really that scarce.

    May 2, 2016

  • A new term was tried to anoint
    A fixture with bulbs at each point.
    They tried electrolier
    Instead of chandelier
    But now it's the update that's quaint.

    May 2, 2016

  • I think TankHughes deseves some sort of word hoarder's trophy for knowing about this They Might Be Giants song.

    May 1, 2016

  • See comments at doorcase.

    May 1, 2016

  • A Murphy bed's shy but polite;
    In daytime it keeps out of sight.
    It hides in a doorcase
    To free up some floor space
    And only comes out in the night.

    May 1, 2016

  • The North slav will miss his sastruga,
    The slav of the East his beluga.
    For the sad southern slav
    The homesickness salve
    Is talk of his cherished zadruga.

    April 30, 2016

  • Said Ernest, contrite and compunct,
    "When tested I surely have flunked
    I called it a fraud
    But the word is just odd,
    Not pompous or phony, just unked.

    Find out more about Ernest Bafflewit

    April 29, 2016

  • A cephalophore (from the Greek for "head-carrier") is a saint who is generally depicted carrying his or her own head; in art, this was usually meant to signify that the subject in question had been martyred by beheading. Handling the halo in this circumstance offers a unique challenge for the artist. Some put the halo where the head used to be; others have the saint carrying the halo along with the head.

    The term "cephalophore" was first used in a French article by Marcel Hébert, "Les martyrs céphalophores Euchaire, Elophe et Libaire", in Revue de l'Université de Bruxelles, v. 19 (1914).


    April 28, 2016

  • We Wordniks, well-mannered though droll,
    Have wearied of Spamski the Troll.
    When a hideous spam spike
    Stands out like a rampike
    Please, Erin, quick chop down that Pole.

    April 28, 2016

  • The bottle's a liar at best,
    As many a wretch can attest.
    To drink supernaculum
    Is a sad simulacrum
    Of life that is lived with true zest.

    April 27, 2016

  • A French croissant's a revelation,
    A triumph of morning gustation.
    The dull sheen of butter
    Sets my heart aflutter
    And crunch of the crusty crispation.

    April 26, 2016

  • The punk kids all yearn to be jazzier
    And wear duds once dull but now snazzier.
    Like loud clouds of locusts
    Ferociously focused
    They subject the thrift shops to razzia.

    April 25, 2016

  • treacherous, duplicitous, mendacious

    April 24, 2016

  • Each romcom you write will require
    Some trick to provide the needfire,
    Some sort of meet cute
    Like a silly dispute
    To kindle the flames of desire.

    April 24, 2016

  • Alphonse was a pampered reptile,
    A model of serpentine style.
    He basked in a tazza
    On a sunny piazza
    While folks fed him bugs all the while.

    April 23, 2016

  • This could also be a word you don't want to hear from the mouth of your cardiologisy.

    April 22, 2016

  • We mock grim death to partake
    In horrors that carnivals make.
    If the danger is faux
    We'll give it a go
    To thrill at a harmless heartquake.

    April 22, 2016

Comments for qms

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  • Thank you, ruzuzu. Verse is not neccessary but your good wishes are much appreciated. I only wanted to acknowledge Erin's gesture and to prepare my excuses in advance in case I miss a day here and there.

    June 3, 2015

  • Dear qms,

    I'm sorry I haven't written a get-well verse for you yet. Everything I try to rhyme betrays my dislike of cars and drivers--and since most of the people I know happen to be drivers, I thought maybe I'd cool off for a bit.

    Get well soon,

    June 3, 2015

  • Did your vault parse the arc of a diver?
    Or a ballerina's poise: didst thou outstrive her?
    But forgive me this jest,
    I wish you and elbows my best,
    *shakes fist at said stupid driver*

    June 1, 2015

  • Kind Wordniks: In her generous verse of yesterday erinmckean referenced my injury, which could interfere with submissions to Wordnik. On my last bike ride, May 22 (alas, my last for some time I'm afraid) an inattentive driver cut in front of me, so

    My dismount was the handlebar vault - 
    A gracefully arcing somersault.
    An elbow twice broken
    And concussion betoken
    The boldness of that asphalt halt.

    Two days ago I had surgery to nail my funny bone back into place. Fortunately (or not - there are opinions) I have been able to continue limericizing. This is a tribute to Erin's helpfulness and the power of OCD.

    May 31, 2015

  • At Wordnik we are truly blessed
    To have, as lyricist, qms.
    Although a recent awkward injury
    may make his typing a bit gingery
    we still daily receive of his best.

    May 30, 2015

  • The annum revolves from last to next
    But yields no daily tempting text.
    Is there some curse
    On good-natured verse
    Or will 2015 be lexically hexed?

    January 1, 2015

  • Dear Wordniks my aim is to woo you
    To visit "community" if you choose to.
    Let not this hiatus
    Depress or abate us,
    Let's flock to the beckoning ruzuzu.

    December 25, 2014

  • Thanks, qms! I was thinking that in the meantime maybe we should just congregate on one of the word pages--community makes as much sense as any. See you there?

    December 24, 2014

  • I especially admire your last few limericks. Keep up the good work!

    December 15, 2014

  • By rights this should be posted on the account of the user lozonbeatty, but that account will soon be squished to wriggling flatness by the almighty thumb of erinmckean, if it has not already been so reduced. I post my comment here so that it will not be collateral damage.

    I was struck by the last few sentences of lozonbeatty’s message, that is, three or four sentences, depending on one’s inclination to generosity:

    I experience scorching soon after using the tablet. and that i sweat quite a bit .they explain to me it is because the tablet si performing for me. I m seriously pleased with this particular outcome.

    There is something of poetry and of perversion in these words. I had hoped that bilby might address this, but he is probably out snowshoeing, or whatever it is they do in the Australian Winter. I have not his gift for mock Spammish so I must resort to my native idiom to give lozonbeatty some advice:

    Anent your fiery fat pill story
    More testimony is obligatory.
    You should be testing
    Other ways of ingesting.
    Suppose you try suppository?

    July 3, 2014

  • On any page, scroll down to the bottom, then click on the Community link under News. That will take you to what we used to call 'the front page' of the site where you can see all the latest user comments (and some other stuff). Sometimes you'll see that a 'conversation' between frequent users is developing on a particular word.
    Doorbelling is also fine, we do that too.
    p.s. There should also be a Community link on the black bar at the top.

    January 1, 2014

  • You can comment on any word except the Word of the Day in the WotD section.
    Your double bracket theory is correct, you can make a clickable link to any word's page by doing that. Then just scroll down till you find the comment box.

    December 19, 2013

  • I seem to have managed to make everything a comment FOR qms ABOUT qms. What I would like to do is offer comment FROM qms about a word. I wonder if double brackets on a word such as hebetude would land me in a useful place.

    December 19, 2013

  • From 11/27/2013, hebetude

           Thanksgiving, 2013
    We dine this day on heaps of food,
    Then slump in sleepy lassitude.
    Sad bales of clothes
    Near comatose –
    Though conscious, sunk in hebetude.

    December 19, 2013

  • WotD for 12/06/2013, subnivean

                Snow Fleas
    To Winter they're not giving in
    To slumber in chilly oblivion.
    They cheerfully go
    Underneath the snow
    And, happy there, hop subnivean.

    December 19, 2013

  • I have encountered enough success at posting a comment to look back a bit for other Word of the Day offerings that I have limericized. My skills as an archivist are weak, but I have found a couple.

    From 12/11/2013, cete

    "Coitus" supplies a word for "mate;"
    A batch of badgers it names "cete."
    It could be fun to view
    What those badgers do
    If, like words from roots, they proliferate.

    December 19, 2013

  • From 12/05/2013, morosoph

    The lit'ry world may haughtily scoff
    And judge the writer in some way "off,"
    But a limericist's tools
    Are the insights of fools.
    The form is the art of the morosoph.

    December 19, 2013

  • You can comment on the word cacchinate, though not on the Word Of The Day entry which is in a different part of the site.

    December 18, 2013

  • the meter is funky - a bit to the left of the limerick
    I like it!

    December 18, 2013