We continue our poetry 101 series and discuss the limerick in this post.
I have always considered limericks to be the drunk old uncles of the poetry world. They may not always be entirely appropriate, but they do make us smile. They do not, of course, have to be rude, but many are and they do follow an unexpectedly strict form.
What do I have to do to write a limerick?
Traditionally a limerick has five lines and the rhyme scheme is AABBA.
- Lines one, two, and five rhyme.
- Lines three and four tend be shorter and rhyme.
- The first line usually introduces a person and a place, which can be repeated as the last line, but this is not compulsory.
- They are often both funny and rude, but that is also optional.
To Miss Vera Beringer by Lewis Carroll
“There was a young lady of station
‘I love man’ was her sole exclamation;
But when men cried: ‘You flatter,’
She replied, ‘Oh! no matter
Isle of Man is the true explanation.’”
There was a small boy of Quebec by Rudyard Kipling
“There was a small boy of Quebec
Who was buried in snow to his neck
When they said, ‘Are you friz?’
He replied, ‘Yes, I is —
But we don’t call this cold in Quebec.’”
You can read more limericks here:10 Quirky Limericks for Kids
You can also use this Limerick Generator if you would like to waste some time on the internet.
by Mia Botha
If you enjoyed this post, you will love:
- Poetry 101: Kinds Of Poems – The Haiku
- Poetry 101: Creating Figurative Language Using Literary Devices
- Poetry 101: How To Analyse A Poem
- Poetry 101: Kinds Of Poems – Free Verse
- Poetry 101: Kinds Of Poems – The Sonnet
- Poetry 101: What Is A Poem?
- 15 Reasons To Write Poetry
The Poems Challenge: