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She was standing there with her long hair (flying/waving/streaming/fluttering).

hirashin

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Dear native English speakers、
which verbs would be appropriate in the parenthesis?
She was standing there with her long hair (flying/waving/streaming/fluttering).

Thanks in advance.
Hirashin
 

joadbres

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If you add "in the wind" to the end of the sentence, then they all sound roughly the same to me. Also, they sound more natural to me this way.

If you keep the sentence as it is (i.e., without adding "in the wind"), then "fluttering" sounds the most natural to me, and "flying" the least natural. However, there is not much difference between them, to me. They sound similar to each other.

By the way, there are also other words that work in this sentence, as well, including "blowing", "billowing" and "wafting". As with the original four words you provided, all of these sound better to me if you add "in the wind" at the end.
 

hirashin

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Thanks for the help, joadbres.
So you think all the sentences below would sound natural and have almost the same meaning, right?
a) She was standing there with her long hair flying in the wind.
b) She was standing there with her long hair waving in the wind.
c) She was standing there with her long hair streaming in the wind.
d) She was standing there with her long hair fluttering in the wind.
e) She was standing there with her long hair blowing in the wind.
f) She was standing there with her long hair billowing in the wind.
g) She was standing there with her long hair wafting in the wind.
 

mdchachi

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You don't need "in the wind" because it's implied. Either way is ok.

I wouldn't teach your kids to associate "wafting" with hair. 90% of the time this word will be used in the context of aromas. Yes you can Google it and find references to hair but it sounds like bad romantic fiction writing.
 

hirashin

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Thank you for the further information, mdchachi.
I am not going to teach my students "waft" and "billow".
 

mdchachi

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Yes definitely don't teach them billow! If they try to use it in real life it will probably be misunderstood as "below" or "blow."
 
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Flying sounds good, I'd go with the one that sounds right for you. Fluttering is nice to use in a romantic context.
 

hirashin

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Thanks for the help, Jellyfish kiss. According to your profile, you're from Isle of Man, Britain, right?
 
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