Limerick (poetry)

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For the Irish city of the same name, see Limerick.
Oscar Wilde.jpg

The limerick – believed by most scholars to be named for the town of Balymghoughlick, Ireland – is a form of poetry similar to the Japanese haiku and tanka. Just as the haiku must include a seasonal reference or imagery (the cherry blossoms of spring, the carp-flinging dances of summer), so the limerick traditionally includes a person's name or home town, filth and/or sex, and a strict AABBA rhyme scheme.

There once was a cretin named Jack
Whose buttcrack ran right up his back.
Said he with a leer,
"Toilet paper, my dear?
I use a whole roll at one whack."

or this one

There once was a knight named James Lancelot,
Who looked at Miss Bailey askance a lot.
So whenever he'd pass,
That beautiful ass,
The front of his pants would advance-a-lot.

The above poem adds internal rhymes and extra-filthy imagery, but serves as a reasonably concise example of the form. Here is another:

According to Uncyclopedia
(The only reliable media)
Some limericks are pure
But those ones are fewer;
The others are quite a lot seedier.

A few scholars believe that the true origin of the limerick lies with a wandering medieval magician called Eric who could turn people into fruit by reciting poetry at them. According to this theory, Eric would turn people into bananas by reciting a bananerick, into raspberries by reciting a raspberick, and into pineapples by reciting a pinaplerick. However, only the limerick, once used by Eric to turn his enemies into green citrus, has survived to the modern era. This is probably just as well.

In any case, limericks were ancestral to the sonata, which use a similarly rigid rhyme scheme.

Limerick Variations[edit]

The General Form[edit]

Nu nu nu nu nu nu nu nu
Na na na na na na na nu
Ni ni ni ni ni
Ne ne ne ne ni
No no no no no no no nu.

The Squeaky Clean[edit]

Cummings, Thomas, all that rot
None of their lines are very much hot
Some limericks are gaudy
Often dirty, often bawdy
But others are not.

The Unconventional[edit]

First, two lines that rhyme
Are required all of the time
Then two more
Lines three and four
The last rhymes with nothing.

the limerick is a kick i dont know what to say this poem is bad i am sad this is not a limerick

The Pretentious[edit]

A mosquito was heard to complain
That a chemist had poisoned his brain
The cause of his sorrow
Was 4-4 dichloro-

The Aldulterous[edit]

There once was a woman named Becca
Whose cunt had more pilgrims than Mecca
While her man was outside
Ol' George took a ride
And now all she wants is his pecca

The Subtle (and also pretentious)[edit]

There was an old man out of York
Who always ate soup with a stick
For he said "Since I eat
Neither fish, fowl, nor flesh
I would finish my dinner too soon."

The Limeraiku[edit]

Combine the two kinds
Five syllables in odd lines
Even have seven
Not twenty, not eleven
Now your poem shines

The Haikick[edit]

There was an old man
From Peru, whose lim'ricks all
Look'd like haiku. He

Said with a laugh "I
Cut them in half, the pay is
Much better for two."

The Gibberish Limerick[edit]

do do do do do do do do
blug blug blug blug blop
ploo ploo ploo ploo plop
rah rah rah rah rah rah rah Bob Dylan

The Lazy Limerick[edit]

There once was a man from Peru
Whose limericks stopped at line two.

The Lazier Limerick[edit]

There once was a man from Verdun

The Laziest Limerick aka The Impossible Limerick[edit]

Note: This limerick can not be said aloud nor written, as it is about a man from Lake Nero. Obviously, it ends on line zero.

The Idiot's Limerick[edit]

There once was a fellow so purple,
That...oh crap, this isn't going to work!

The melancholy, ironic (bad) Limerick[edit]

The government's tryin' to get me
And my cat keeps threatening to vet me
So I went to the bank
And then I drank
So they just take out their bills and then debt me



The Bob Dylan (Bad) Limerick[edit]

He once was a man from Minnesota
But His voice carried better in North Dakota
So he complained about life
And he learned how to play the fife
And now I return to the coda. OOOOHHHH! (dc al coda)

The in-joke[edit]

There are those who say Uncyclopedia
is a parody of wikipedia.
Those in the know
know it just isn't so;
disagree? To the kittens we'll feed ya!

The Bob Dylan (Good) Limerick[edit]

Imagine William Shatner singing the "Bob Dylan (Bad) Limerick"

The Oscar Wilde Limerick[edit]

There once lived a man of superlative wit
There was never a pun that he could not hit.
He smacked down Churchill,
left him in the lurch, ill,
and completely destroyed him, the twit.

~ Oscar Wilde

Chuck Norris Limerick[edit]

There once was a guy named Chuck Norris
Who landed on the ground before us
Would he give us a good flick?
Or try a roundhouse kick?
In the end he decided to destroy us.

Higher Love Limerick[edit]

A growing young lad called Mike
Was aroused by riding his bike.
His confessor said: "Peddle faster.
You'll be seized by your Master.
And be loved by your Lord on your bike!"

~anonymous clergyman

Limericks by famous poets[edit]

Many of the great poets tried their hands at limericks.

By the shores of Gichee Gummee
An Indian maiden once knew me
She wanted Hiawatha
Not a silly paleface brotha
No matter how I begged her to chew me.

~Longfellow, Hiawatha

He clasps the crags with his crooked bird hands
On echoing cliffs he motionless stands
The distant sea crawls
He folds his wings, falls,
And like a thundermug he lands.

~Alfred "The Lord" Tennyson, The Eagle

There once were two roads in a yellow wood
I looked down one as long as I could
I could not travel both
(It might have stunted my growth)
And besides, they were slippery with mud.

~Robert "Freeze-Face" Frost, The Roads Not Taken