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Wordsmith.org Forums General Topics Miscellany What does this quote mean?
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OP I dreamt that my hair was kempt. Then I dreamt that my true love unkempt it
kempt :: neat, tidy (combed)
it looks to me as though kempt is actually an old word that went obsolete or unused for several hundred years, and then was recovered via back-formation from unkempt.
FWIW, the kempt part seems to come from an Old English verb meaning 'to comb'. Not to mention humorously reviving the obsolete word kempt.
OP So it means, "this is what happened in my dream. My hair was in order but my sweetheart disorganized it.?"
What does it want to say?
what does it 'want' to say? it seems to say what it says about lovers mussing each other's hair..
it could also be euphemistic, I can't tell what the dream(s) have to do with it without seeing this 'quote' in context; it could mean that the dreamer was dreaming of being ravished by their lover.
using a rare 'opposite' of unkempt makes me think this author wasn't being very serious; see Quinion and How I met my wife.
edit: I assume that this is the source of your quote:
This is my dream,
It is my own dream,
I dreamt it.
I dreamt that my hair was kempt.
Then I dreamt that my true love unkempt it.
Ogden Nash was well known for his humorous poetry.
Last edited by tsuwm; 01/08/14 12:18 PM.
OP So my literal interpretation was correct and it's just that?
to quote someone, it is what it is. : grin :
Plus the play on kempt meaning 'combed'.
It doesn't just refer to hair though does it. It almost means scruffy, i.e he's very unkempt, he looks like a hobo. Not cared for?
----please, draw me a sheep----
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