I am trying to use the expression “words fail me” and I want to know if these sentences are formed correctly:

  1. Look at this mess, words fail me.
  2. This comment is so ridiculous that words fail me.

Is there any other proper expressions with similar nuance above sentences, please let me know.

  • You are using the phrase properly. Note that the phrase is not always critical or sarcastic. Words fail me to say how much he meant to this nation.
    – TimR
    Commented Aug 30, 2018 at 10:31

1 Answer 1


Words fail (someone) is an idiomatic expression of inability to describe something with words, (usually) being overwhelmed with some emotion (shock, surprise, fear). There's also another expression with a similar sense: (being) lost for words.

Here are examples from three different books:

My heart is so full, yet my words fail me.

Sometimes, however, words fail us as speakers and we find a picture truly is worth a thousand words.

I now realize most people scatter in times of true suffering, overwhelmed and awkward when words fail them as they attempt to console.

There's also a less idiomatic version: words fail (e. g. to describe something).

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