Sunday, August 21, 2011

The Limerick

To all who are naturally gifted
My hat I have enviably lifted
They have their own path
That I search for in wrath
Oh, how it seems I have been set adrifted.

Limericks are fun and challenging because you have to fit them into certain structure and meaning format.

There was a young rustic named Mallory,
who drew but a very small salary.
    When he went to the show,
    his purse made him go
to a seat in the uppermost gallery.

There was a Young Person of Smyrna
Whose grandmother threatened to burn her*;
But she seized on the cat,
and said 'Granny, burn that!
You incongruous old woman of Smyrna!'  (Edward Lear)

The standard form of a limerick is a stanza of five lines, with the first, second and fifth usually rhyming with one another and having three feetof three syllables each; and the shorter third and fourth lines also rhyming with each other, but having only two feet of three syllables. The defining "foot" of a limerick's meter is usually the anapaest, (ta-ta-TUM), but limericks can also be considered amphibrachic (ta-TUM-ta).  (from Wikipedia)

For your first attempts stay true to the structure even if the meaning is off, just so you can practive the actual structure. Without the structure your Limericks don't work.

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