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About Roy Jerden
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I starting writing poetry again in 2012 after a 50 year hiatus.

Born and raised in West Texas, I lived all over the area as a child until my mother remarried, as my father was in the oil drilling business, which required constant moving. I grew up in San Angelo, home of Fort Concho and the Buffalo Soldiers, but spent quite a few summers working on my grandpa's farm in the Texas Hill Country.

I met my wife Toni while I was stationed at Aviano AFB, Italy. I learned to speak Italian fluently and we still speak it at home interchangeably with English. My three sons, all born in Italy after I got out of the USAF, also speak Italian.

We moved back to the USA in 1972 and settled in Missouri, where I went back to school.

We moved to Atlanta in 1988, when Toni relocated here with AT&T. I got a job with McKesson (then HBOC) working with medical information systems, which started my career in this field. I had a natural talent for application design and parlayed this talent into a great R&D management position with an internet startup.

We are now retired. We spend time traveling the world and visiting our grandchildren in CA and NC. We also spend some time in Italy almost every year visiting and traveling with friends in Europe as we have a small apartment there in Sacile near Aviano, not far from Venice.

My other passions are mushroom hunting (the edible kind), gourmet cooking and bread baking.


Limerick Contest Update


Blog Posted:5/22/2014 2:48:00 PM
I wanted to give an update on this contest as there are several limericks I will have to exclude from placement if they are not fixed. I also would like to give a quick tutorial on what a bawdy limerick is.

There are five limericks which are off the count by one syllable. Please do a syllable count and correct if necessary.

The count is 9,9,6,6,9. No exceptions.

One poem would be a proper limerick if the rhyme scheme were followed. In this one, the 4th and 5th lines rhyme. That is not correct. The correct rhyme scheme is AABBA, not AABBB. Please correct.

A bawdy limerick is not a dirty limerick. A dirty limerick is explicit. A bawdy limerick uses words with double meanings. Done to perfection, a bawdy limerick can be read without overtly offending anyone, although few reach that level. Part of what makes the bawdy limerick funny is "getting" the clever double entendres that a child wouldn't understand. If you remember the "Benny Hill Show", a lot of its humor was based on double meanings.

If you want the limerick to be really funny, it should also employ traditional humorous devices.

The most common device is what the Germans call Schadenfreude, happiness at the misfortune of others. It's the clown's pratfall, the church lady fart, etc.

Another device, a bit kinder, is incongruity. That's the surprise twist, the punchline that often makes a joke funny.

Another common device is manipulation of the language, using puns and tortured rhyme, or dialect.

The really funny limericks will use several humorous devices.

Here's a limerick I wrote for a St. Patrick's day contest. I have tweaked it a bit since then. I will deconstruct it, also.

Premature Exoneration

"It's a cuckold I am!", Mick sadly said
"I'm after finding black hairs in me bed!"
    "An' there's a relief!"
    Sighed Rusty O'Keefe
"I was shure ye were aboot ta say red!"

So the limerick employs Schadenfreude, as Mick laments his wife's cheating with a black haired man. Note that the word "hairs" was used, not "hair", hence code for pubic hair.

The turn comes when Rusty (nickname for someone with red hair) expresses relief that Mick didn't find his color hair. Then, in the punchline, he stupidly incriminates himself by expressing certainty that Mick was actually going to find his hair color, which means he was in Mick's bed also.

Finally, Schadenfreude reappears as Mick is now doubly cuckold, and Rusty has screwed himself too.

Also, the poem is written using Irish phraseology and words are changed to mimic the pronunciation. Perhaps unkind stereotyping, but it wouldn't be as funny otherwise.

Here's a bawdy limerick I wrote using double meanings:

The Well Traveled Linguist

A ventriloquist there was named Monique
Who could make all of her body parts speak
    Her right hand did British
    Her left handled Yiddish
Down below she preferred French and took Greek

Even the title is a double entendre, as "Well Traveled" is code for "been around the block".

It is pretty innocuous until the last line as there is no implication of sexual content until then. Then the double meanings of French (oral sex) and Greek (anal sex) kick in and it becomes quite naughty to those who know the code words. Actually, you could probably even use British and Yiddish if you wanted to stretch things, but I think they've been stretched enough.

Both limericks were based on jokes I read, but were not simply poetic reproductions. The idea is to discover what the essence of the joke is and use that in some way.

Here's the first one:

Sean says to Paddy and Mick, "My wife is sleeping with another man."
Paddy says, "Has he got ginger pubes?"
Mick says, "I most certainly do not!"

And the second:

Q: How does a woman scare a gynecologist?
A: By becoming a ventriloquist!

Actually, this one evolved quite a bit, as the first version of this limerick was very close to the joke:

There was a lady ventriloquist
With maybe an ovarian cyst
    At the time of diagnosis
    The doc had a thrombosis
When her genitals asked to be kissed

In any case, look at some jokes to get ideas.

Also, work on the meter. There are only a few of the poems submitted that have proper limerick meter.

Cheers, and have fun.






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  1. Date: 5/22/2014 10:19:00 PM
    Roy, I believe I understand about bawdy limericks and I really like your examples. But for me "dirty" means "bawdy" as well. There is "subtle dirty"(a more clever type of humor) and there is "too explicit dirty." I prefer the first kind, the way you are doing it. Yes, I saw a few of the limericks using wrong syllable or rhyme scheme in your contest. I tried to point it out to them. I hope some of them listened to me.

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  1. Date: 5/22/2014 8:12:00 PM
    Hey they seemed to have taken away the ABOUT the POEM ability so now you can't see MacCool's tool!

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    Jerden Avatar Roy Jerden Date: 5/23/2014 9:45:00 AM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    You're right! The old ones still seem to work, though. Wonder if it's a glitch...
  1. Date: 5/22/2014 8:10:00 PM
    wow those are too racy for me LOL I hope I counted right please let me know! L & L

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    Guzzi Avatar Debbie Guzzi Date: 5/23/2014 9:53:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    euphemisms are US LOL
    Jerden Avatar Roy Jerden Date: 5/23/2014 9:41:00 AM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    I'm never concerned about yours, Debbie. Hmmm... Too racy? I seem to remember one that I fav'ed about Pearl Diving....

My Past Blog Posts

 
Clean and Clever Limerick Contest Update
Date Posted: 11/17/2014 7:51:00 AM
My First Short Story - Accepted for publication
Date Posted: 11/2/2014 6:46:00 PM
Happy Halloween
Date Posted: 10/31/2014 7:18:00 AM
Non-Christian Poetry Contest Update
Date Posted: 10/19/2014 9:05:00 AM
New Contest - Religious Poetry: Non-Christian
Date Posted: 10/5/2014 6:40:00 AM
"AT SEVENTEEN"
Date Posted: 9/30/2014 10:57:00 AM
The Pedicure Virgin
Date Posted: 9/11/2014 8:19:00 PM
How to make an image out of a long poem
Date Posted: 9/3/2014 12:58:00 PM
How to do a scansion of your poem to verify the meter
Date Posted: 8/19/2014 6:03:00 PM
Too Subtle?
Date Posted: 8/15/2014 1:39:00 PM
New Feature -Poet's Notes About the Poem
Date Posted: 8/2/2014 12:31:00 PM
Free Verse: Start here or finish here
Date Posted: 7/21/2014 7:04:00 PM
Bogus Entries in Contests
Date Posted: 7/19/2014 6:46:00 AM
Punctuation and Capitalization in Poetry
Date Posted: 7/18/2014 6:35:00 PM
About Poem/Poem Notes/Inspiration, etc.
Date Posted: 7/18/2014 8:17:00 AM
Bawdy Limericks II Judged
Date Posted: 7/6/2014 2:48:00 PM
To Footnote or Not to Footnote?
Date Posted: 7/3/2014 8:47:00 PM
User trying to set a password
Date Posted: 6/24/2014 10:01:00 PM
Centering, Bolding, and Italicizing in a Poem
Date Posted: 6/9/2014 9:51:00 PM
Bawdy Limerick Contest Complete
Date Posted: 6/7/2014 4:38:00 PM
Limerick Contest Update - Last chance
Date Posted: 5/27/2014 5:31:00 PM
Bonnie Parker's Poetry
Date Posted: 5/24/2014 2:48:00 PM
Limerick Contest Update
Date Posted: 5/22/2014 2:48:00 PM
Kudos on the Miltonic Sonnet Contest
Date Posted: 5/13/2014 4:06:00 PM
Limerick Contest
Date Posted: 5/4/2014 7:56:00 PM

My Recent Poems

Date PostedPoemTitleFormCategories
11/14/2014 One Tolkien Over the Line Rhymetribute,
11/5/2014 Message of the Moth Quatrainangst,longing,
10/30/2014 Just Another Routine Day Monorhymedeath,
10/28/2014 Drool Burger Epulaeryufood,
10/25/2014 Pi Day Rhymehumor,
10/25/2014 Go For It Carpe Dieminspirational,
10/15/2014 Halloween on the Dark Side of Town Rhymeholiday,satire,
9/22/2014 Andrea Dietrich Clerihewtribute,
9/15/2014 The Empty Quarter Alliterationearth,nature,stars,
8/31/2014 Bad Goldilocks Abecedarianhumorous,
8/25/2014 Pussy Riot Chastushkahumor,
8/23/2014 Matryoshkan Multiverse Haibunhumor,
8/18/2014 A Roll of Duct Tape - Footle Footlehumor,
8/10/2014 The New One Blank versedark,
8/5/2014 Little Superheroes Quatrainchild,children,
7/22/2014 A Brush of Wings Versebird,
7/16/2014 Great A'Tuin - the Giant Star Turtle Haibundeath,journey,stars,
7/13/2014 Blood on the Saddle Limerickfunny,vacation,
7/8/2014 Willow: A Fable Rhymechildren,death,dream,fant
6/30/2014 Ragnarok: The Storm Epyllionweather,
6/28/2014 Dante's Path Quatrainspiritual,
6/11/2014 Bill's Drill Limerickhumorous,
5/26/2014 Albert Einstein Clerihewhumorous,science,
5/22/2014 John Cougar Mellencamp Clerihewbio,humorous,
5/19/2014 Same Old Soup Quatrainpoetry,satire,
5/14/2014 Into the Sunlight Haikunature,
5/12/2014 Rainier Haikunature,
5/9/2014 Januaries Haikunature,
5/7/2014 Jonah Falcon He's Not Limerickfunny,
5/6/2014 The Well Traveled Linguist Limerickhumorous,
5/5/2014 Raise the Mast Limerickhumorous,
5/4/2014 Are you glad to see me or is that just a wrinkle Limerickage,funny,
5/2/2014 The Devil Can Cite Scripture For His Purpose Rhymehate,religion,slam,
5/1/2014 On Conspiracy Theories Sonnetphilosophy,
4/28/2014 Florida Gold Limerickfunny,
4/28/2014 Tongue Oil Limerickfunny,
4/28/2014 Red Moon Limerickfunny,
4/28/2014 Fochs Gnus Rhymeslam,
4/24/2014 Concerning Human Understanding Blank versephilosophy,
4/1/2014 The Thunderous Wonderous Electric Toy Train Rhymechristmas,nostalgia,
3/18/2014 Ignominious Exit Rhymehumorous,
3/11/2014 Premature Exoneration Limerickholiday,humor,
2/28/2014 Going Gigging Rhymefishing,
2/10/2014 A Series of Unfortunate Darwin Awards Limerickdeath,humorous,silly,
2/7/2014 What Can I Do Sonnetabsence,death,fear,
1/29/2014 The Earth Abides Quatrainnatural disasters,nature,
1/23/2014 Ancient Dance Sonnetlove,
1/21/2014 Happy Hour Iambic Pentameterdrink,relationship,satire
1/7/2014 San Saba Springtime Sonnetnature,spring,
12/28/2013 The Whittlers Cowboygrowing up,nostalgia,
12/19/2013 Redneck Santa Rhymechristmas,
12/17/2013 The Tale of the China Poblana Epichistory,
6/13/2013 Ode on a Japanese Commode Rhymehumorous,
5/24/2013 The Fruits of their Labors Free versepolitical,
5/23/2013 Damaged Goods Quatrainabuse,
5/21/2013 White Trash Nostalgia Quatraingrowing up,
5/15/2013 The Conceit of Poetry Coupletphilosophy,
4/26/2013 Empyreal Ecstasy Quatrainnature,night,stars,
4/24/2013 Bordeaux Rouge Limerickhumorous,
4/18/2013 head typist Quatrainhumorous,writing,
4/14/2013 The Roughneck Song Rhymeday,drink,red,song,work,
3/23/2013 Tiger's Wood Limericksports,
3/20/2013 A Couple for the Ages Sonnethumorous,
3/17/2013 Bambino, Bambina Limerickbaby,
3/11/2013 The Treachery of Images Ekphrasis (Ecphrasis)art,image,me,
3/8/2013 Pearl of La Paz Sonnetdeath,grief,
2/17/2013 All Hat and No Cattle Cowboycowboy,humorous,old,time,
2/10/2013 Dark Temptress Rhymefood,humorous,passion,
2/10/2013 Three Pills Sonnetlife,me,philosophy,truth,
1/30/2013 Icebox Days Rhymechildhood,growing up,humo
1/26/2013 The Angel Inside Rhymeallegory,angel,art,beauti
1/22/2013 Call Me Tex Cowboycowboy-western,humorous,s
1/10/2013 Bobcat Moon Rhymeautumn,friendship,loss,mo
12/9/2012 Six Man Dance Rhymeautumn,football,nostalgia
11/18/2012 La Bejarena Rhymeangel,beauty,death,histor
8/27/2012 Kiss of the Eagle Rhymeadventure,space,travel,
8/23/2012 Delicacy of Leaves Rhymehappiness,nature,time,
8/10/2012 Keep It Turnin' to the Right Rhymeday,earth,funny,life,love
8/10/2012 Cruising the Drag Rhymecar,funny,growing up,high

My Photos


Fav Poems

PoemTitleFormCategories
Amazement Free verseplaces,voice,life,voice,
Pearl Diving Quatrainlove,
Slow Movin Tights Balladme,red,women,
That Night We Kissed Rondeauromanceheart,night,heart,
A Voice In The Wind Rhymeimagination,nature,
Stay Sonnetlife,self,self,
Within a Storm Sonnetinspirational,
Sailing the Seas In A Pecan Tree Rhymeadventure,old,
Soul of the Poet Quatrainfarewell,poems,poetess,
Generations Epicbirth,death,hope,life,
Muse Free versewords,writing,
Falling upward Rhymeanger,angst,bereavement,b
Words Rhymelove,words,song,song,
No Longer Mourn for Me When I Am Dead Lyricdeath,faith,religious,
Ashen Snow Villanellesad,september,

Fav Poets

PoetCountry 
Mark Peterson United States Flag United States Read