2011 Poetry Form Challenge

#02 Limerick Poetry

Limericks probably get their name from the old custom of each person at a party being required to sing a nonsense verse off the top of their head followed by the chorus which included "Will you come up to Limerick?"

Though light and humorous in nature, Limericks can be more difficult to write than they at first appear to be and do require definite poetic skill. Limericks usually come in two forms: a five-line stanza, as in the above example, or a four-line form. Traditionally, the first, and fifth lines ended in the same word, as in this anonymous example:
There once was a man from Nantucket
Who kept all his cash in a bucket;
But his daughter named Nan
Ran away with a man,
And as for the bucket, Nantucket.

There was a young lady of Lynn
Who was so excessively thin
That when she essayed
To drink lemonade
She slipped through the straw and fell in.

The example above is more common, although it's far though the effect is more striking if it can be pulled off. Regardless of which you use, the rhyme scheme is still aabba:

The other form is a four-line stanza, though the only real difference is typographical. The 3rd and 4th lines are combined, but there is now an internal rhyme. Here are two examples from the undisputed master of the Limerick, Edward Lear:
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 an old man who supposed,
That the street door was partially closed;
But a very large rat, ate his coat and his hat,
While that futile old gentleman dozed.

Edward Lear

Limerick Challenge Replies

Divena Collins

As I See It
Barney the Cave Man
Belly Full
If Only
Jack The Lad
Joys of Kipling
Jungle Boogie
Romany Gypsy Girl
Salacia Sea Goddess
Shaddowed Love
To Be A Woman
Way Down Under

Jem Farmer

Beyond Place and Time
Promised Kisses

Ivor Hogg

Four more for fun
Triple Whammy

Reason A Poteet

Valentine Exchange

Ryter Roethicle

An itch is good for a mile
Black Mood
Death of a Lovesong
Maryse and Will
Your Winter

Dana Rowe

Brakeman's Blues
Hogger's Hail

Bill Topper

His Nose
Just Limericks
Lady Named Mervis
Old Bill
That Lad From New York
Thrilled by Will

Nia Wynne

Lost Love

Divena Collins

As I See It

She holds a chalice within her hands
I shall but decipher to understand
The pages of her script
Found in Egyptian crypt
Scrolled in this ancient far off land.

Above the chalice there appears an asp
A toadstool which was simple to grasp
A single star shining bright
Reads to me that it`s night
The script paints a picture to enclasp.

The first star that appears that night
Shall shine and turn the sky so bright
It shall blind the eye
They wondered why
That this should affect all in sight.

The toadstool was mixed unto a potion
And the asps milk blended this poison
Into the chalise of death
Leaving short the breath
Land crumbled with earth quakes motion.

Only a tablet remains left of the crypt
That dreaded chalice of poison sipped
The asp and the star
A toadstool from far
Now remains within tablet of script.


Barney the Cave Man

There was a cave man called Barney
He had spoken a load of old blarney
It got him a wife
Rubble and strife
Shacked out in a cave in Killarney.

They had young son named Ugg
Who was smitten by his lady bug
He took her home
For to be his own
All she ever wanted was to hug.

There was no other generations
Never any more close relations
But Adam and Eve
You gotta believe
They were both apple-acheans.


Belly Full

A little mouse ate a chunk of cheese
When suddenly he started to sneeze
He started to wee
All over the brie
Then skuttled off and left with ease.

A buzzing blow fly said "My oh my
What a very good find here have I"
His tummy was hot
Threw up on the lot
While germs on the cheese ran high.

A drunken man came home for his tea
The cheese had been put there for he
Praised his misses
Hugs and kisses
What a wonderful misses was she.

The very next day with pains in his gut
Every step he took like a knife had cut
The mouse and fly
Had wondered why
He collapsed within the old privvy hut.

The end of his fate came from the skies
Guardian angels heeded loud his cry`s
To eat bad food
Will do no good
So the little mouse then swatted the flies.


If Only

Oh if Only I had feathers to fly
I`d soar like the birds in the sky
My wings I shall spread
Aim down on your head
Sending droppings from up high.

Oh if only I was a humble flea
Much better than a bumble bee
I would do my thing
To bite and not sting
A sting can mean the death of me.

Oh If only I met a zebra in the zoo
Much better than an ass like you
Not much for relations
Theres no conversations
But if I shant then an ass will do.


Jack The Lad

He is known by the name of Jack the lad
He can feel what is good and nothing bad
Woo`s the ladies with a passion
Love he says is not his fashion
Just a rampant sailor said Jack the lad.


Joys of Kipling

Within the contours of my mind
Some memories therein I shall find
When we was very young
His praise we had sung
Rudyard Kipling was one of a kind.

He wrote of Journeys upon the sea
Of far off jungles with wildbeast free
Of thrones and power
Of trees and flowers
He captured us deep in his mystery.

Just So Tales were written with flair
Stories for children treasured there
For I often recall
He did us enthrall
In awe of these fine tales to share.


Jungle Boogie

Deep in jungle, where bongo drums beat
Natives boogie woogie with bangled feet
Coconuts shells, bamboo canes
Rhythmic chants, monsoon rains.
Partying together in the humid heat

Banana skins hiding loose hung parts
Women in grass skirts boogie starts
Come do a limbo dance with me
Crazy poll dance I ever did see
For mind over body in a trance of arts.

Shaking, and Shimmying all night long
Parties in swing, it`s a great ding dong.
Get ready for a boogie feast
Mango, pineapple, wildebeest
Take your partner you cant go wrong

Move that body those feet in motion
Lets all party on both sides of the ocean
Come boogie were havin` a ball
It all ends when monsoons fall.
Lets all hang out and capture emotion.


Romany Gypsy Girl

What ails thee oh romany gypsy girl
Thou cannot dance nor sing or twirl
Thine eyes serene
Play thy tambourine
And sing of thy sadness to unfurl.

For every frown upon thy young face
Form deep furrowed lines that race
Which matures with age
Unto this fragile page
And eternal youth shall fade a pace.

Shake thy tormented troubled mind
Dance and sing then thou shalt find
A gentleness within
Let merriment begin
And banish sullen thought`s behind.

Let thy tambourine play a merry tune
As youth shall be gone all too soon
So sing and dance
Love and romance
Beneath the aura of a full new moon.


Salacia Sea Goddess

From the salt of the deep sea bed
A crown of seaweed on her head
Nymph from the sea
This Goddess to be
Salacia love of King Neptune wed.

In a pearl shell chariot she did ride
Drawn by two dolphins on either side
This regal sage of the sea
Salt water nymph was she
Who betrothed her love with pride.

Green her eyes of the oceans jade
Amidst the sedge where ere she laid
Within her deep sea bed
Where sea serpents fled
`Twixt planctain and sea weed sage.

Arise fair Salacia the day has dawned
The sun has shone fish have spawned
Sea Goddess reign once more
The waves of the ocean floor
Within your divinity forever and beyond.


Shadowed Love

In a silent shadow of the moons night
Just as I was getting my feelings right
I then shed a tear
He was not here
And had disappeared from my sight.

Within my sorrow I remained alone
My dreams of love turned to stone
Was I to blame
Was love a game
For heartaches I seem to be prone.

Why should love be treated as such
Why cant I now, ever feel his touch
When yearnings enfold
And embers grow cold
Why should love now hurt so much.

Maybe I`ll stick to my old rocking chair
Get out my knitting pins let down my hair
And call it a day
This I just may
Remain with memories only I will share.


To Be A Woman

Women have different faces
Put on posh airs and graces
She can be a lady
And may be shady
Or a tart when he embraces.

Women have different moods
Must be gentle with the goods
She can be demure
Acts like she`s pure
At heart she would if he could.

A Woman craves much attention
Thinks love was a good invention
But please be gentle
She can turn mental
And the rest I shall not mention.

Women In Art


Way Down Under

Way down under where Aborigines romp
Deep in the outback dancing the stomp
Didgeredoos play the blues
Gator skins farmed for shoes
Unless they drag you down the swamp.

Barbequed beaches dinkum for a lark
Gotta watch out for a great white shark
Sun too hot stay in shade
Mozzies swarm to invade
And leave you with an itchy bite mark.

Plenty of topless sheilas on the beach
Forget them for they are out of reach
Not to touch or embrace
Ye`ll get a slap on yer face.
And yer manhood they shall breach.

The men get high on fosters beer
Drinking every moment of the year
Then they retire to sleep
After dining on their sheep
Satisfied with a belly full of cheer.

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Jem Farmer

Beyond Place and Time

When reaching for the stars firmament
we rise above the mundane torment
leaving the angst behind
climbing higher to find
the power of our own conscious intent.

Each step empowers another dream
and beyond the clouds stars brightly gleam
the guiding light of old
for the daring and bold
who hold on tight to their living dream.

We get closer each day as we climb
a little nearer to the light sublime
the way may wind and wend
as we strive to the end
to dwell in realms beyond place and time.


Lovers Gin

While I was sat drinking lemonade
the winter's chilling sun started to fade
the calm before the storm
perhaps another dawn
found in fizzy dreams of lemonade.

A hazy moonlit beach then appeared
my senses numbing as I had feared
as a pretty girl winked
at me, I dare not blink
in case she then went and disappeared.

The summer bronze reflected on her skin
her jewel like eyes just drank me in
an orchid in my gaze
to banish winter days
and I was caught in a lover's gin.


Promised Kisses

Oh love of mine when the dawn awakes
my promised kisses are yours to take
in the first golden light
as we seal our loving night
your gentle heart I will never break.

Dear lady you are all I desire
come fill my dreams of love with your fire
and I will sate your needs
with all my words and deeds
and serenade you with ancient lyre.

We'll share the joy we find along the way
and as we shed the fear of yesterday
to embrace the future's hope
we are joined by love's rope
to be one, forever and a day.

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Ivor Hogg


There is a lady called Devina
Who thought no one had seen her
nipping in for quick gin
at her local Dew drop Inn.
She was spotted by her cleaner.


Four more for fun

There was young Ozzie called Bruce
Who suffered maternal abuse.
His mother would belt him
each time that she felt him
Getting to big for his shoes

There was a young man in Brisbane
Who thought getting married insane.
But a Sheila he knew
soon convinced him to
Consider his options again.

An Ozzie Sheila called Ann
Thought that she needed a man.
She married a loser
an idle young boozer
Sheís going to divorce thatís her plan.

A bright young aborigine
was convinced that he should be.
Seen as worthy of respect
You do not always get what you expect.
He found precious little in Sydney.


Triple Whammy

There was a young lady from Ealing
Whose manner of dress was revealing
exposed to the air
a magnificent pair
Of knickers she bought in Darjeeling.

There was a young fellow called Lance.
Who desperately sought for romance
He had halitosis
and so the prognosis.
Was that he stood little chance.

There was a young lass from Belfast
One Easter decided to fast.
She lived for a week
on bubble and squeak
Quite proud of the wind that she passed.

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Reason A Poteet

Valentine Exchange

There were two sweethearts; each needed a gift.
But these Valentines had suffered a rift.
He chose a puppy dog.
She bought a marble frog.
On Valentineís Day the exchange was swift.

She treasures the frog, a matchless item;
he enjoys the dog, picked to delight him.
Though the gifts belong to the other
they share gladly with one another.
Both grateful for the humor God gave Ďem.

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Ryter Roethicle

An itch is good for a mile

Never steal a cake from a Parsee
Cause he is so cunning doncha see
Heíll wait till yers go for a swim
Then grab yer gear and put things in
That are guaranteed to make you itchee.

The sun there is hot and makes you sweat
If you like to swim then donít upset
A bloke that wears a turban
Heíll look after you if he can
And be your faithful bhisti you can bet


Black Mood

If I get a hump a serious camels hump
Youíll hear me whinge and give a loud harump.
Stead of sipping it fine,
Iíll swig my wine
Another reason for me being a grump



A bicycle was once Divena's favourite ride,
With three companions by her side.
The London to Brighton,
That ride did not frighton,
But then she'd grab a smoke, and go hide.

Divena finally gave away the smokes
And took to writing good poetry jokes.
She writes great romance as well,
And others that are simply swell,
Now her tongue out at ciggies she pokes.

Divena has a lot of good friends here
Cause it's a site she can come without fear
She don't like critiques
From self opinionated geeks
Who take good poets and wantonly smear.



Ivor says, "Snow is no joke"
And never fun at it would he poke
So he's forced to hibernate
In his house with his mate
And coming out is more than smoke.

Ivor and his mate, hid away for a while
You heard soft murmurs, "What a style!"
One wandered the grounds
And heard some strange sounds
Then they both emerged later, with a smile.

His mate is a patient type of lass
She must be to put up with his brass
She's a Martyr and a Saint
And an expert at restraint
But every so often will kick him up the Kyber.


Maryse and Will

Willow loves to eat
And is specially fond of Dragons Feet
With spuds and onions in a stew
He's happy and says "That'll do".
He thinks it's "rather neat!"

Maryse on the other hand
Thinks a Volcanic Vindaloo is grand
With plenty of chilli and spice
That really makes it nice
It's so hot, that in some places it's banned.

Maryse and Willow ate one day
After the feet were cooked Maryses way
Willow turned a very bright red
Smoke was rising from around his head
It's the first time he's had nothing to say.

All this time Maryse sat so demure
She was looking around for a fruity cure
One breath burned down a banana tree
Landing close by her knee
She had created "Banana de jure".

Maryse has a niece called Perkins
Who it seems is fond of small gherkins
One day whilst at tea
She ate 63
And pickled her internal workings.



I wonder should limericks always be fun
Should we ever poke fun at someone
Do they ever cause harm
Do they act as a balm
By insulting whilst on the run?

But then again, any type of man
Does not react to this kind of flan
He makes a smile wide
From ear to ear side
Defeating any insultation plan.



The whale is a very funny fish
When you want it to eat, you need more than one dish
A side of ribs will feed a whole town
And just to gollop a whole fin down
Could be a soup, a curry, but never a quiche.

And remember a whale could never eat you
Unless it took time to manufacture a stew.
Because Kiplingís braces made a filter
It put a human out of kilter
Giving the whale a new dietary point of view


Your Winter

I wonder often what winter is like
It seems Nature goes on a no go strike
Whilst on the opposite side of the worl
Her wonders she begins again to unfurl
And that I like, so take a hike.

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Dana Rowe


there once was a day, after blizzard
I thought I was being a wizard
yes, early to rise
all shoveled outside
but then skidded to work like a lizard.


Brakeman's Blues

the cars were all wobbling harmoics
the passengers felt its narcotic
the brakeman jogged through
enroute to the loo
his kidneys had gone episodic


Hogger's Hail

there came once a railroader sturdy
embarked with his train on a journey
he had plenty of steam
so his whistle could scream
his speed made the scenery blurry



There once was a man from Nantucket
always carried his fish in a bucket
if you let the man in
he'll come with a grin
and you give him a quahaug, he'll shuck it!

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Bill Topper

His Nose

There was a young man on the railroad
had warts on his nose from an ugly toad
when the girls all drew near
they scattered with fear
when the warts on his nose did explode


Just Limericks

there lives a fine girl in the Isles
she tickles my fancy with her smiles
she hides now and then
but comes back again
enchanting me with her womanly wiles.

There was a young girl sought romance
One day she just took a chance
She found her a beau
and tried something new
I promise it wasn't a dance

There was a ragged old man from the city
Who ate hand to mouth what a pity
one day we discovered
the facts we uncovered
He had millions of dollars in his ditty.


Lady Named Mervis

There was a young lady named Mervis
What she did would all but unnerve us
On the corner she's smile
And linger a while
With a mattress she'd sing out curb service.


Miscllaneous Limericks

Jacob the Judge was so ornery
The judgments he made were so corny
To young ladies he said
Better off in my bed
Cause Jacob the judge was too horny

I lusted for Little Bo Peep
Or maybe I was after her sheep
I scratched my head bare
Guess I didn't care
If I lusted while I was asleep

To the lady who knocked on my door
Don't you know it is you I adore?
You're so pretty and slight
And your jeans fit so tight
Are you sure that your just not a...bore?


Old Bill

Old Bill went to town to get married
By his side was a shotgun he carried
Was for his daughter Sofia you know
Was a hell of a show
Marry her Luke or get buried

Bill entered the broken down church
Luke staggered through the door with a lurch
To the preacher he said
Iíd rather be dead
Than to marry this lass I besmirched

The roar of Billís gun filled the room
To the floor Ďtween the legs of the groom
If you donít marry my lass
Iíll bust a shot in your ass
And the next one will bring you your doom

Well the church grew all quite itís said
Some townsfolkís snuck out and they fled
As they fled down the street
Heard the police go tweet tweet
And they all hid away in their beds

Sophia with tears in her eyes
And a tummy that had begun to rise
Cried let him go daddy-o
Iíll find a new bo
Iím tired of listening to his lies

Steam rose from Billís glistening head
His face puffed all up and turned red
Iíll not let him flee
I do this for thee
As new shells to his shotgun were fed

Luke knew that the end had drawn near
He started to quake with his fear
Iíll do it dear dad
Thought I know Iíve been had
Iíll marry her and call her my dear

The moral is then if youíre smart
Donít plant your seed in a tart
If you do better run
If her dad has a gun
Or better yet, donít even start


That Lad From New York

There once was a lad from New York
Most people called him a dork
Folks he could not please
They'd tease him with ease
Caught him eating Cream Soup with a fork


Thrilled by Will

There was an old drunk name was Will
always filled his stomach with swill
till he swallowed a nut
too big for his butt
the explosion gave many a thrill



Screech country music with a fiddle
on an old piece of wood you must whittle
till your hands get too sore
full of splinters and more
your big piece of wood became little



Lost in a withering hale
like a dog chasing its tail
the wind blows greater
it grows later and later
away from this place I might sail

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Nia Wynne

Lost Love

There once was a fairy named Lea
Who loved a stout Fae lad from Sidhe,
He flew down to the glen
To meet his sweetheart then
Found another lad there with his she.

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