From sona pona

    Function of peverbs[edit | edit source]

    A preverb can precede the main verb of a toki pona sentence to modify its meaning.

    How to use preverbs: put them before the verb.

    example: mi wile moku e kili - I want to eat a fruit

    you may stack preverbs:

    mi pini alasa moku e kili suli - I finish trying to eat a huge fruit

    in order to negate preverbs, put ala after them:

    mi wile ala moku e kili - I don't want to eat the fruit

    Preverbs defined in pu:[edit | edit source]

    wile - when you wanna do something

    sona - when you know how to do something

    awen - when you continue doing something

    kama - when you're coming to do something

    ken - when you have the ability to do something

    lukin - when you try to do something

    Preverbs not in pu but in common usage[edit | edit source]

    open - when you start doing something pini - when you finish doing something alasa - when you try to do something

    Uncommon preverbs[edit | edit source]

    olin - when you love doing something pakala - when you mess up something pake - when you stop doing something (more direct than pini)

    Preverb kama[edit | edit source]

    The pre-verb kama is used when you change from a state where you aren't something or don't do something, to a state where you are or do something. For example: mi kama jo e ilo ≈ I didn't have the tool, and then I did → I acquired / obtained the tool, I came into possession of the tool mi kama sona e ijo ≈ I didn't know something, and then I did → I learned something, I found out something (or: I'm learning something) mi kama loje ≈ I wasn't red, and then I was → I became red, I reddened (e.g. I started blushing) mi kama lon ≈ I wasn't there, and then I was → I appeared, I came into existence mi kama wile moku ≈ I didn't want to eat, and then I did → I got hungry (or: I'm getting hungry)