[A brief poem?]


Another Engliocity


   Cleave apart

   and go right through?

   or stop instead

   and just

   cleave to?


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   “For this cause a man shall cleave to his wife…” said Jesus according to Mt. 19:4. The light and lay (layman) comments that follow respond to recently reading this English translation of Jesus’ words.

   English presents “cleave” with two very different meanings that are commonly used.

   First, here are assorted parts that can go with this verb:  clove, cleft, cleaved, cloven.

   Now “cleaved to”:

      To stick fast to. Consider this: Rose’s mouth was dry, her tongue cleaving to the roof of her mouth. Or: Part of the reason we cleave to sports is that excellence is so measurable. Or, To become very strongly involved with or emotionally attached to something or someone. Consider this: It was his choice to cleave to his wife (or his interpretation of the Bible).

   Now “cleaved (often with ‘apart’ or ‘through’)”:

    To split or sever (something), esp. along a natural line or grain. Consider this: Father used his large ax to cleave wood for the fire.  Or:  To break a chemical bond. Or:  To make a way through something forcefully. They watched a coot cleave the smooth water. Or:  Stan was off cleaving a path through traffic.  Or:  An unstoppable warrior clove through their ranks.  Or:  (in biology) The egg cleaves to form a mulberry-shaped cluster of shelves.


   [This information in heavily supported by the Oxford Online Dictionary.]