Stash: transitive verb : to store in a usually secret place for future use

From “The Shawl”: I got my growth earlier that some boys, and, one night when I was thirteen and Doris and Raymond and I were sitting around wishing for something besides the oatmeal and commodity canned milk I’d stashed so he couldn’t sell them, I heard him coming down the road.

Now I understand that the boy kept the oatmeal and commodity canned milk in secret place so that his father won’t sell them and they could eat later.


Scorch: verb: to burn a surface of so as to change its color and texture, to dry or shrivel with or as if with intense heat

From “The Shawl”: His chest was scorched with pain, and yet he pushed himself on. He’d never run so fast, so hard and furiously, but he was determined, and he refused to believe that the increasing distance between him and the wagon was real.

Now I came to understand that the boy was running very fast, so his chest was burning with pain but still he was not ready to give up the race with the wagon.


intransitive verb

to make a moaning or sighing sound
From “Metamorphosis” by Franz Kafka, page 7, paragraph 1.
“He was still occupied with this difficult movement, unable to pay attention to anything else, when he heard the chief clerk exclaim a lout “Oh!”, which sounded like the soughing of the wind.”
I felt silly having to reread this sentence.  Once I learned the meaning, I reread it once more, and it made me understand the visual of Gregor being judged on his appearance by the chief clerk. It made the moment a lot more dramatic. It made me almost feel bad for him.