Poetry competition CLOSED 26th February 2021 10:53am
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DaisyGrace
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Ye Olde English

Northern_Soul
Northern_Soul
-Missy-
Fire of Insight
United Kingdom
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Poetry Contest

Write a poem inspired by one of the Old English words listed below.

I love looking at old English words. They are often spectacular in both their grandeur and their bizarre (but often appropriate) meanings.

For this competition, I would like you to write a poem inspired by one of the words / phrases from this choice of 25 listed below.

Rules

• New poems only
• Please write the word you choose to base your poem on in your authors note
• Any length or style is acceptable. There are no constraints on formatting or form.
• Up to 3 entries per human
• 2 weeks

Word List

1. Bedward
Exactly as it sounds, bedward means heading for bed. Who doesn’t like heading bedward after a hard day?

2. Billingsgate
This one is a sneaky word; it sounds so very proper and yet it refers to abusive language and curse words.

3. Brabble
Do you ever brabble? To brabble is to argue loudly about matters of no importance.

4. Crapulous
A most appropriate sounding word for the condition of feeling ill as a result of too much eating/drinking.

5. Elflock
Such a sweet word to describe hair that is tangled, as if it has been matted by elves.

6. Erstwhile
This very British sounding word refers to things that are not current, that belong to a former time, rather like the word itself.

7. Expergefactor
Something that wakes you up is an expergefactor. For most of us it’s our alarm clocks, but it could be anything from a chirping bird to a noisy neighbour.

8. Fudgel
Fudgel is the act of giving the impression you are working, when really you are doing nothing.

9. Groke
This means to stare intently at someone who is eating, in the hope that they will give you some. Watch any dog for a demonstration.

10. Grubble
Grubble might sound like the name of a character from a fantasy novel but it does in fact mean to feel or grope around for something that you can’t see.

11. Hugger-mugger
What a fun way to describe secretive, or covert behaviour.

12. Hum durgeon
An imaginary illness. Sounds more like an imaginary word. Have you ever suffered from hum durgeon?

13. Jargogle
This is a perfect word that should never have left our vocabulary, it means to confuse or jumble.

14. Lanspresado
It sounds like the name of a sparkling wine, but no, it means a person who arrives somewhere, having conveniently forgotten their wallet, or having some other complicated story to explain why they don’t have money with them.

15. Mumpsimus
Mumpsimums is an incorrect view on something that a person refuses to let go of.

16. Quagswag
To shake something backwards and forwards is to quagswag, who knew?

17. Rawgabbit
We all know a few rawgabbits. A rawgabbit is a person who likes to gossip confidentially about matters that they know nothing about.

18. Snollygoster
I think we can all agree this is a fantastic sounding word. It means a person who has intelligence but no principles; a dangerous combination. Watch out for the snollygosters, they live amongst us.

19. Snottor
This old english term has the unlikely meaning of “wise.” Really?

20. Trumpery
Things that look good but are basically worthless. I said THINGS, not people.

21. Uhtceare
This means lying awake worrying before dawn. We all do this, we just didn’t know there was a word for it. Say it now, like this: oot-key-are-a.

22. Ultracrepidarian
Similar to the rawgabbit, this person takes every opportunity to share their opinion about things they know nothing about. Social media is the perfect outlet for these people.

23. Zwodder
Being in a drowsy, fuzzy state, after a big night out perhaps?

24. Cockalorum
A small man with a big opinion of himself.

25. Swithe Me Therefore
How to say you request nocturnal bedroom activities with your romantic suitor.

anna_grin
anna_grin
ilchruthach
Dangerous Mind
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another absolutely banging idea for a competition missy. will give it a second shot. haven’t picked my word yet some of them have very interesting connotations applied to modern life

Northern_Soul
Northern_Soul
-Missy-
Fire of Insight
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anna_grin said:another absolutely banging idea for a competition missy. will give it a second shot. haven’t picked my word yet some of them have very interesting connotations applied to modern life

Thanks. Good luck! 🤞🏻

MadameLavender
MadameLavender
Guardian of Shadows
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Can we use more than one word in the poem or just one of the words per poem?

Northern_Soul
Northern_Soul
-Missy-
Fire of Insight
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MadameLavender said:Can we use more than one word in the poem or just one of the words per poem?

You don’t have to use any of the words in the poem at all if you don’t want to, as long as the poem is based on the meaning of the word and the word chosen is mentioned in your authors note.

If you want to use the word itself in your poem, or a couple of the words, have at it :)

DaisyGrace
DaisyGrace
Dangerous Mind
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“I’m heading bedward. You coming?”

My favorite hour, of all
the hours in a day,
is the slow satisfied  
bedward hour.  
 
For there you
are deliberate -  
routines of necessity and  
comfort and the need
to tell me, adamantly,
that I am loved.  
Even when sleep makes
your eyelids heavy.  
 
The unassuming removal  
of everyday clothes and  
how you move, unashamed  
knees and strong legs,
while I burrow into
your bed, a dormouse with
thankful eyes.  
(Knowing the only reason  
you’ve put on socks is to  
keep the chill from my  
cold fearing skin.)
 
Careful peeling back of  
blankets so I don’t  
feel a single breath of
cool air before tucking me
to your chest and  
reminding me, once more,  
I am loved.  
 
Staying awake one wink
longer to see that  
I have understood and  
watch as it washes  
through me.  
 
Yes.  
My favorite hour, of all
the hours in a day,
is the slow satisfied  
bedward hour.
Written by DaisyGrace
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Noble_Incubus
Noble_Incubus
Twisted Dreamer
Australia
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Great idea for a competition. I really like the word: besmirch, but I feel it isn’t archaic enough for this competition so I think I might go with one of the suggestions: jargogle, instead.

Just waiting for inspiration to strike.

anna_grin
anna_grin
ilchruthach
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i like billings gate, elf lock and snottor. i feel like the fit my three “personalities “ or identities well. it could take me some time and I may miss the deadline but likewise waiting for that lightning strike

Noble_Incubus
Noble_Incubus
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anna_grin said:i like billings gate, elf lock and snottor. i feel like the fit my three “personalities “ or identities well. it could take me some time and I may miss the deadline but likewise waiting for that lightning strike

Billingsgate is such a great word. In the gap series (science fiction novels) author Stephen Donaldson named an asteroid housing ne’er do wells Billingsgate. The word has stuck with me ever since. I nearly went with it for this competition but I feel jargogle is more amusing.

Northern_Soul
Northern_Soul
-Missy-
Fire of Insight
United Kingdom
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Thank you for your entry @DaisyGrace.

Razzerleaf
Razzerleaf
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Covert operations ( Hugger-mugger)

Every light in the house was on. The fancy dress had spilled out onto the front lawn. Juliet was screaming expletives at a drunken Romeo. Thankfully they were drowned out by music that met us in the drive way. It was so loud that the garage doors vibrated like the skin of a steel bass drum. We pushed our way through the front door using the sharp end of a Pinot Grigio as a cattle prod. “Has anybody seen the phone?” shouted a beret clad French man heading off upstairs with a string of onions round his neck. I had, it, was heading off up the street with the answering machine, carried by some dodgy bloke in a stripy jumper and a mask. I thought it best to say nothing since I can’t speak French.

Oh sorry, I’m forgetting my manners. I should do some introductions. I’m Bruce and this is my partner Robin. We are stood in the extremely large kitchen of the biggest bitch that ever walked this earth. My ex, Marilyn Munro, she’s over there by the fridge shoving her tits up, so Zorro can leave his mark with a ball point pen. OK so it’s a bit weird, wanting to crash a party incognito, just so you can check up on your ex but….shit she’s looking over, “Come on Robin, to the Bat Cave! There's not a moment to lose. It’s payback time.”

Mission one…loopy juice.

We arrived at a large dining room that was the main source of the music. All sorts of famous people filled the packed dance floor. They moved like lava lamps to the psychedelic tune. A rather hefty Twiggy was dancing with Jim Morrison both with their eyes closed and looking like they had swallowed the sixties. Just beyond them was our primary target so we made our move. The Punch bowl had just been replenished. It looked quite sophisticated with sliced fruits floating amongst the ruby elixir. From inside my coat I produced a large bottle of Absinthe. With Robin as my look out I completed the mission.

Mission two was easy. The sound system was on random play. It had more hours of MP3’s than Romeo, on the front lawn, had excuses. I cranked the volume up to a, I’m phoning the police right now, kind of level. We were just heading out of the room as the throng went crazy, incited by the guitar intro of Mr Brightside. “Holy Killers Batman” said Robin “just look at them go.” “That will make them thirsty,” I replied.

I stepped outside onto the rear terrace of the house and headed for the shadows. I had sent Robin to conceal himself in Marilyn’s on suit bathroom. So far everything had gone to plan. The bitch would be sorry she dumped me. I‘ll show her who the looser is. I quickly became Bruce Wayne and walked round to the front of the house waiting for the Police to show up.

The Punch was having the desired effect and I had half the neighbourhood reaching for their phones. Party goers were wandering around outside staring at their hands as if some magical force was running through them. Two, man size Goldfish were trying to swim in the ornate fountain at the front of the drive. Another group had turned up dressed in green leotards. They had petals round their heads and yellow painted faces. They were now standing amongst the flowers gently swaying in unison. This group of would be sunflowers were all speaking in a strange, plant like language.

A large, fluffy green bird that went by the name of Orville, was trying to climb on top of the garage roof, announcing as he climbed, that he thought he could fly. Things were getting out of hand and I was glad to see the drainpipe give way, since his landing was cushioned by his large green arse.

I heard the crackle of a police radio and two officers appeared, both were on foot and responding to a complaint call. I sprang into action. “Hello commissioner Gordon can I help you?” ” Yes you can sonny, is this your party? And my name isn’t Gordon.” “Sorry officer, no it’s not my party but I can take you to the young lady whose parents own the house.” “Ok then Sir, lead on.”

Mission three…overnight guests.

“I think this is her bedroom” I said as I knocked and opened the door. Once I had the two cops inside, the lights went out. Thwack, Biff, Pow, Thud. The lights went on. Miraculously the two officers were tied up together. They had gags on their mouths and pillow cases over their heads. We quickly bundled them into Marilyn’s wardrobe and left the room.

The party was slowing down as I became Batman again. Miss Monroe had changed into a black leather one piece and was whipping Zorro up stairs to bed. The dynamic duo, exhausted from their covert activities fell asleep, sitting on the sofa.

I heard the doorbell and saw the blue flashing light. Upstairs, Miss Whiplash had passed out on the bed fully clothed and Zorro had vanished into the night. She had woken with a start and was now staring in disbelief at the carnage outside her bedroom window and the police car on the drive. “What the hell do you want at this time of the morning?” Just at that moment she heard a police radio behind her, she opened her cupboard door and screamed; sweet.

We stood in the morning sun as the police escorted her away, strutting in her high heels, hands cuffed behind her back. As they reached the police car she stood talking to the arresting officer and I’m not quite sure what happened, the sky seemed to darken for a brief moment and a cool breeze ran in through the front door as if it was bringing in a change. All the cats from the surrounding houses came out to see what was happening they swarmed around the roadside, brushing against legs, jumping on car bonnets and making quite a din. My focus returned to the show I had orchestrated. She was helped into the car and the officer had just placed his hand on top of her head. She turned struggling to break free and looked straight at me. ” I’ll get you Batman” she shouted. “I’ll get you.”

“Holy cats Batman this is a catastrophe!” “Oh I’m not so sure Robin; I think I may have found my nemesis.” “Holy nemesis Batman.” “For god sake Billy shut up and wave!”
Written by Razzerleaf
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Razzerleaf
Razzerleaf
Fire of Insight
United Kingdom
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Tenancy Agreement (Mumpsimums)

I don't want to be kicked out.
My body spent £3.50p
on an advert.
Wanted:
a warm soul to fit inside
a fifty three year old shell.

I'm not really that bothered,
the place has got too big
for me, the plumbing's
knackered, I can't see shit
through the windows
and I've been growing cannabis
in the loft for years.

We've had a few to look around,
they all say the same thing.
It smells funny and needs too much work.
Well,
at least I have one more night in my own bed,
I better lie in it.
Written by Razzerleaf
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Noble_Incubus
Noble_Incubus
Twisted Dreamer
Australia
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Jargogle (competition entry)

‘Tis an old word to be sure,
But strangely apt for modern times,
For history does not quite repeat,  
But inevitably it rhymes.  
  
Imagine holding an empty jar,  
And you’re staring through the base,  
Then gaze upon your closest friend,  
And see their distorted face.  
   
What seemed once familiar,  
Is now perversely warped,  
Gaze upon the world this way,  
And it colours all your thoughts.  
   
We live now in strange times,  
In complex ways we’re wired,  
A mess of interconnectedness,    
No empty jar required.    
   
Our modern changing world beset,    
By confusion without end,  
An old word describes this perfectly,  
It’s called “jargogle” my friend.
Written by Noble_Incubus
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Northern_Soul
Northern_Soul
-Missy-
Fire of Insight
United Kingdom
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Many thanks Razzerleaf and Noble_Incubus for your entries 😄

Noble_Incubus
Noble_Incubus
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Australia
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Northern_Soul said:Many thanks Razzerleaf and Noble_Incubus for your entries 😄

Forsooth, poetry ‘tis a worthy endeavor, I am honoured to play my meager part m’Lady.

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