Posted by: jockmackenzie | March 15, 2010

Poetry & Song – Entry 11 – The Limerick #3

Seeing the Limerick in the mind’s eye


thanks to fotosearch for the photos

The following is an excerpt from Poetry and Song (as yet unpublished)


Next comes the picture of a limerick (and this is the perfect limerick):


U     /     U     U     /     U     U     /     8     a

U     /     U     U     /     U     U     /     8     a

U     /     U     U     /     5     b

U     /     U     U     /     5     b

U     /     U     U     /     U     U     /     8     a


The perfect limerick has 8 syllables in Lines 1,2, & 5.

The perfect limerick has 5 syllables in Lines 3 & 4.

Lines 1, 2, and 5 rhyme with one another.

Lines 3 and 4 rhyme with one another.


As an example of a perfect limerick, I offer:

U        /      U  U    /       U  U    /

There once was a man with a beard

U     /      U U   /    U U    /

Who said, “It is just as I feared –

U    /    U  U  /

An owl and a hen

U     /       U  U    /

Four larks and a wren

U     /     U      U      /       U  U       /

Have all built their nests in my beard


U  /   U      U      /    U      U    /

I’d rather have fingers than toes

U   /   U     U      /       U  U    /

I’d rather have ears than a nose

U   /  U    U      /

And as for my hair

U     /    U    U     /

I’m glad it’s all there

U  /    U  U  /       U   U   /

I’ll be awfly sad when it goes

Immediately after showing the perfect limerick, I explain that “pretty close” is allowed. My rule has been that the first, second, and last lines may have 7 – 9 syllables and that lines 3 and 4 may have 4 – 6 syllables.


Responses

  1. a good explanation of the pattern of a limerick.well done.


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