Misused words are my pet peeve;
The more I hear, the more I grieve.
Below are some examples—
Some fine and classic samples.
“Heart-rendering” is one such peeve
(It hurts to even say it),
Please let me be remembered
As the man who would gainsay it.
For rendering (let’s clarify)
Is what we do to lard;
“Heart-rendering” would terrify
This lily-livered bard.
Heart-rending is the phrase we need
To indicate a pain
That lacerates the heart, indeed,
And makes us all humane.
“Ek cetera” is another one
I wish would disappear,
And bring back old et cetera,
So Latin to my ear.
“Affect” for “effect” makes me cringe,
(The net effect is pain),
It’s out there just beyond the fringe
Affecting my poor brain.
There’s “Calvary” for “cavalry”
(Ms. Malaprop would grin),
But others, not so merry,
Would consider it a sin.
Flout and flaunt are oft confused,
But scofflaws flout the law,
While ostentatious people flaunt
And rub our nerve ends raw.
And finally there are “tenets,
Which are our principles,
But landlords look for “tenants”
Who are their principals.
And “irregardless” I believe
Is, ipso facto, a pet peeve.