motion

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poetry in motion

Something that is very elegant, graceful, and/or beautiful to observe, especially dance or the performing arts. The ballet was sublime to watch, truly poetry in motion.
See also: motion

the wheels are in motion

Things have begun developing, unfolding, or progressing. If you're going to act, you have to do it now, but once the wheels are in motion, there is no going back! Boss: "Jeff, what's the status of our new deployment strategy?" Jeff: "The wheels are in motion, we're just waiting for some final tests from the development team."
See also: motion, wheel

it's not the meat, it's the motion

It's not what you have, it's how you use it. The phrase is often used in a sexual way (as "meat" is a slang term for "penis"). Don't be discouraged—it's not the meat, it's the motion!
See also: motion, not

go through the motions

To do something without much thought or interest. I've done this job for so long that I just go through the motions every day.
See also: motion, through

put (something) in motion

To cause something to begin. The legislation was put in motion by a senator from New Hampshire. We've been planning the details for months, but it's ultimately up to the boss to put the project in motion.
See also: motion, put

set (something) in motion

To cause something to begin. The legislation was set in motion by a senator from New Hampshire. We've been planning the details for months, but it's ultimately up to the boss to set the project in motion.
See also: motion, set

put the wheels in motion

To cause something to begin. The wheels were put in motion for stricter gun laws by a senator from New Hampshire. We've been planning the details for months, but it's ultimately up to the boss to put the wheels in motion.
See also: motion, put, wheel

set the wheels in motion

To cause something to begin. The wheels were set in motion for stricter gun laws by a senator from New Hampshire. We've been planning the details for months, but it's ultimately up to the boss to set the wheels in motion.
See also: motion, set, wheel

go through the motions

Fig. to make a feeble effort to do something; to do something insincerely or in cursory fashion. Jane isn't doing her best. She's just going through the motions. Bill was supposed to be raking the yard, but he was just going through the motions.
See also: motion, through

motion (for) someone to do something

to give someone a hand signal to do something. The minister motioned the organist to begin playing. I motioned Ken to raise the curtain so the play could begin. Sally motioned for the waiter to bring the check. I will motion to the usher and try to get him to come over here and help us.
See also: motion

motion someone aside

to give a hand signal to someone to move aside. (See also motion someone to one side.) He motioned her aside and had a word with her. I motioned aside the guard and asked him a question.
See also: aside, motion

motion someone away from someone or something

to give a hand signal to someone to move away from someone or something. She motioned me away from Susan. The police officer motioned the boys away from the wrecked car.
See also: away, motion

motion someone to one side

 and motion someone to the side
to give someone a hand signal to move to the side of something, such as the road. (Very similar to motion someone aside.) The cop motioned her to the side of the road. Claire motioned Fred to one side, where she spoke to him.
See also: motion, one, side

motion to someone

to make some sort of hand signal to a person. Did you motion to me? What do you want? I did not motion to you.
See also: motion

set something in motion

to start something moving. The mayor set the project in motion by digging the first shovelful of soil. I cannot set the procedure in motion until I receive a purchase order.
See also: motion, set

table a motion

to postpone the discussion of something during a meeting. Mary suggested that they should table the motion. The motion for a new policy was tabled until the next meeting.
See also: motion, table

go through the motions

Do something perfunctorily, or merely pretend to do it. For example, The team is so far behind that they're just going through the motions, or She didn't really grieve at his death; she just went through the motions. [c. 1800]
See also: motion, through

set in motion

Start something moving, give impetus to something, as in A press conference set the new project in motion. It is also put as set the wheels in motion, as in Let's set the wheels in motion for the new library wing. This idiom dates from about 1800. It was preceded by put in motion, which dates from the mid-1600s.
See also: motion, set

wheels in motion

see under set in motion.
See also: motion, wheel

go through the motions

COMMON If you go through the motions, you do something that you have to do or are expected to do, but without any real effort or enthusiasm. Students who did attend classes with any regularity seemed to be just going through the motions. `You don't really care, do you?' she said quietly.`You're just going through the motions.'
See also: motion, through

set the wheels in motion

If you set the wheels in motion you do what is necessary to start something happening. So if you'll just sign the agreement, we'll set the wheels in motion. By 1971 Bridget's mother had set the wheels in motion to divorce Tayar. Note: The verb put is sometimes used instead of set. Less than 30 days after becoming leader of his party, he put the wheels in motion to forge a merger with the Alliance. Note: You can also say that the wheels are in motion. Sources indicated the wheels are in motion for the two sides to meet following tomorrow's Grey Cup game.
See also: motion, set, wheel

go through the motions

1 do something perfunctorily, without any enthusiasm or commitment. 2 simulate an action; act out something.
See also: motion, through

set the wheels in motion

do something to begin a process or put a plan into action.
See also: motion, set, wheel

put/set something in ˈmotion

(also set the wheels in ˈmotion) do what is necessary to make a start on a project, plan, meeting, etc: The Government wants to put the new reforms in motion before the election.It will be many years before we see any results, but at least we know that the wheels are in motion.
This expression refers to starting a large and complicated piece of machinery.
See also: motion, put, set, something

go through the ˈmotions (of doing something)

do something or say something because you have to, not because you really want to: He went through the motions of welcoming her friends, but then quickly left the room.She’s not really interested in the subject — she’s just going through the motions.
See also: motion, through

motion-lotion

n. gasoline; motor fuel. (Citizens band radio.) Let’s stop up ahead for some motion-lotion.

go through the motions

To do something in a mechanical manner indicative of a lack of interest or involvement.
See also: motion, through

set in motion

To give impetus to: The indictment set the judicial process in motion.
See also: motion, set
References in classic literature ?
It was at about five minutes after one that afternoon that Constable Thomas Parsons, patrolling his beat, was aware of a man motioning to him from the doorway of Bredin's Parisian Cafe and Restaurant.
Better now," quoth Sir Leicester, motioning the lawyer to sit down and read to him alone.
It seemed the forest now or nothing, and I was just on the point of motioning Tars Tarkas to follow me in that direction when the sun passed the cliff's zenith, and as the bright rays touched the dull surface it burst out into a million scintillant lights of burnished gold, of flaming red, of soft greens, and gleaming whites--a more gorgeous and inspiring spectacle human eye has never rested upon.
Then, squatting upon his haunches, he proceeded to eat, first motioning Clayton to join him.
Go in," he said, motioning him to pass behind the curtain.
he muttered, at last, motioning with his head towards the curtain.
Suddenly I saw him halt, listen intently, and then in an instant he had swung the door of the safe to, picked up his coat, stuffed his tools into the pockets, and darted behind the window curtain, motioning me to do the same.