The "Friday Poetry" group, of which I am a member, had last weeks theme as "Limericks", in honour of St Patricks's Day. The limerick is a nice form, because you can be silly and surreal, or you can actually be real but succinct, but there is always pretty well always an overtone of fun because of the form. Here are some of mine, beginning with two silly ones, for your amusement:
There once was a Princess called Sally
Who went down a very dark ally
She was frozen with fear
And exclaimed dear, oh dear
Until her courage returned and did rally
There was a nasty old smell like a cheese
Which caused all who smelt it to sneeze
But it came from ripe socks
Left behind in a box
Until it was blown away in a breeze
And here is one which takes its cue from the song made famous by "The Scaffold" - Lily the Pink. I've added a link to them playing the song afterwards. It's the famous "medicinal compound" which changes everyone who drinks it, and was at the top of the charts for ages - if I was less lazy, I'd look it up.
There was an old man from Skye
Who was creaking and ready to die
But he met Lily the Pink
Her elixir did drink
And now he's a leaping and spry
And I looked it up - Wiki said: "The song was a hit for the UK comedy group The Scaffold in December 1968, becoming the #1 single in the UK singles chart for the four weeks encompassing the Christmas holidays that year."
Now for a bit of colonialism. I've always thought there is something patronising in the master-servant relationship between Crusoe and Friday in Daniel Defoe's book. There's a cultural imperialism there which I rather dislike. So here is a limerick which carries a degree of irony.
There was once a man called Friday
Left footprints in the sand one day
Robinson Crusoe saw them
Exclaimed "what a gem!"
"He can be a butler and carry my tray"
Back to fun and simplicity. Here is a poem about a very famous cat and her owner.
There once was a small cat called Jess
Whose fur was a black and white mess
And she went in a van
With a funny old man
It was Postman Pat, as you'd guess!
If you've never come across Postman Pat, with its depiction of a gentle rural England, you have missed a treat. The original children's series (I'm not too keen on the more modern version) is charming, with Pat, a Village Post Office and its gossipy postmistress (we had one in St Brelade's Bay) and a host of rural characters sympathetically portrayed. It is a lost world, an idealised world, but a wonderful world.
For more, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Postman_Pat
And finally, here is an obituary limerick of a rather famous UK politician who has recently died. Always something of a maverick, I rather liked him, even when I disagreed with him, although I agreed with a lot of what he said. Here's a limerick to succinctly sum up something of the man:
There once was an MP called Tony Benn
Who preferred not a sword but a pen
There were Diaries that he wrote
And he often did vote
Until he scribbled the final Amen
André Maurois knew the problem - Maurois was a quotable French author of the early 20th century. One quote of his that came very much to mind on a couple of occassions last week is (in...
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