Not all of us can be poets but there are some forms of poetry that are fun to try your hand at. Just get familiar with the rules and have a go at it!
Limericks are a lot of fun
Half begun is almost done
It isn’t hard to do
I can do it, can you?
Just use your wit or find a pun.
Limericks used to be pretty popular at one time. Their popularity has waxed and waned over time but they have never totally fallen out of favour. Limericks are short, simple and almost always funny. Some are absurd, others are quite clever and a few are rather naughty. The English poet Edward Lear wrote a lot of great Limericks and is sometimes credited with inventing the format but he denied doing so. No one really knows why Limericks are called Limericks. Was it because the first one was about a place called Limerick or because it was written in Limerick? No one really knows or cares. This five-line stanza has been around for many years. One of the earliest examples is found in Halliwell’s 16th century collection of English Nursery Rhymes:
Diddledy, diddledy, dumpty!
The cat ran up the plum-tree;
Half a crown
to fetch her down,
Diddledy, diddledy, dumpty
As you can see, it’s a five-line format where the first, second and fifth lines rhyme, as do the third and fourth. That’s called an anapaestic meter with a strict rhyme scheme (AABBA).To give you a flavour of this form of poetry, here are some of the old favourites. They usually start with a mention of a place and a person:
There was a Young Lady whose chin
Resembled the point of a pin:
So she had it made sharp,
And purchased a harp,
And played several tunes with her chin.
There was an Old Man with a beard,
Who said, “It is just as I feared!
Two Owls and a Hen,
Four Larks and a Wren,
Have all built their nests in my beard
There was a Young Lady of Niger,
Who smiled as she rode on a tiger;
They came back from the ride
With the lady inside,
And the smile on the face of the tiger.
There was an old man who said, “Do
Tell me how to add two and two?
I’m not very sure
That it doesn’t make four
But I fear that is almost too few”
There once was a young lady named Bright
Whose speed was much faster than light
She set out one day
In a relative way
And returned on the previous night.
There was a young lady of Crete,
Who was so exceedingly neat,
When she got out of bed
She stood on her head,
To make sure of not soiling her feet.
There are die-hard fans of the form and newspapers often held contests asking readers to complete a Limerick. Would you like to try your hand at it?
Creative Yatra has a new contest
They will pick only the best
Just add a line
Right below mine
Put on your thinking hat and follow the AABBA format of rhyming.
Apr 29, 2020
One of India’s most celebrated actors, Irrfan Khan known for his expressive eyes, died after succumbing to a long battle with cancer. He was 54. A gaping void has been left in the Indian film industry as one of India’s…
Apr 23, 2020
While the Globe is streaming free its second dramatic production Romeo and Juliet, today is 23rd April, the day William Shakespeare (1564-1616) is believed to have been born and died. One would seldom find a more spontaneous and intense expression…
May 29, 2019
Let’s know Shubigi Rao, who has recently been selected as the curator for the 2020 Kochi Muziris Biennale, for her “exceptional acumen and inventive sensibilities” The format of the art biennale to showcase contemporary visual art, across the world is modeled on…
May 24, 2019
In this piece 64 year old Dr Yatin Desai, shares with CY his inspiring story of how to scale towering mountains with utmost ease and how this life adventure activity can shape human character and health. Chances are high that…