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Get Your Limerick ON! - Debbie Guzzi's Blog

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Deborah Guzzi writes full time. Her third book, The Hurricane is available through Prolific Press. Her poetry appears in Allegro, Artificium, Shooter, & The Foxglove Journal in the UK, Subterranean Blue, Existere, The Ekphrastic Review, Scarlet Leaf Review & Subterranean Blue Poetry, Canada - Tincture, Australia - mgv2>publishing, France Cha: Asian Review, China - Vine Leaves Literary Journal, Australia - The Scarlet Leaf Review - Greece, Ribbons, pioneertown, Sounding Review, Bacopa Literary Review, The Aurorean, Liquid Imagination, The Tishman Review, Page & Spine & others in the USA. 

Get Your Limerick ON!

Blog Posted:1/15/2011 5:38:00 AM

My new Contest is for adults, we will all be working on "spit shining" our Limerick form. Please feel free to use animals, as well as, people in your limericks or even meat eating plants. LOL There once was a Venus Flytrap....

The standard form of a limerick is a stanza of 5 lines, with the first, second and fifth usually rhyming with one another and having three feet of three syllables each; and the shorter third and fourth lines also rhyming with each other, but having only two feet of three syllables. The defining "foot" of a limerick's meter is usually the anapaest, (ta-ta-TUM), but limericks can also be considered amphibrachic (ta-TUM-ta).

NOTE! The first syllable in the line is optional. You can also add an extra, non-stressed syllable at the end if you like. Take, for example, one of the most famous limericks of all..

There once was a man from Nantucket

The 1st line traditionally introduces a PERSON and a PLACE, with the place appearing at the end of the first line and establishing the rhyme scheme for the 2nd and 5th lines.[a/a/b/b/a]. In early limericks, the last line was often essentially a repeat of the first line, although this is no longer customary.

Within the genre, ordinary speech stress is often distorted in the first line, and may be regarded as a feature of the form: "There was a young man from the coast;" "There once was a girl from Detroit…" The use of geographical names, especially exotic ones, is also common. The most prized limericks incorporate a kind of twist, which may be revealed in the final line or lie in the way the rhymes are often intentionally tortured, or both. Many limericks show some form of internal rhyme, alliteration or assonance, or some element of word play.

Anyone have any questions? Please ask here OR in my soup mail, when in doubt please ask!

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Date: 1/17/2011 4:36:00 AM
Guys and Gal's Limericks are meant to be off color, we are all trying to stay within SOUP WORD GUIDLINES but the not VULGAR guidline is a vaguer area. PLEASE JUST DO NOT READ ADULT LIMERICKS IN THIS CONTEST IF YOU ARE TOUCHY ABOUT INFERANCE? OR EUPHIMISIMS?????
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Date: 1/16/2011 7:27:00 PM
whewwwwww... instead of counting sheep, am now numbering syllables and beats, lol... since i'm into contemporary limericks, it's good to go back to basics... just tear mine if it doesn't fit, huhuhu! kidding!! thanks for your patience; now i'm a wacko patient! huggggs, debs! :)
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Date: 1/16/2011 2:12:00 PM
yup....yup.....I deleted mine.....
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Date: 1/16/2011 11:19:00 AM
I like the funny limericks you posted, Deb. I hope the Social Security System qualifies as an animal as it appears as a beast in my dreams of old age. LOL Love, Carolyn
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Date: 1/16/2011 9:43:00 AM
Or two, suggests another contemporary poet, John Hegley, citing a rather rude one: There was a young woman from Leeds, who swallowed a packet of seeds, within half an hour her tits were in flower and her fanny was covered in weeds.
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Date: 1/16/2011 9:43:00 AM
There was an Old Man of Vienna Who lived upon Tincture of Senna. When that did not agree, He took Camomile Tea, That nasty Old Man of Vienna. Lear's rhymes feel dated to modern ears, with his practice of repeating the first line as the last. "It feels like a cop-out nowadays," says the poet Roger McGough. "The limerick is the pratfall of poetry: the set up, the 1-2-3, the timing, then the rug is pulled." A good limerick is like a good gag.
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John Avatar
Stephen John
Date: 11/16/2017 2:00:00 AM
Are you talking about rug or throw rug like ?? Its a type of bedding commonly used here in Australia!
John Avatar
Stephen John
Date: 11/16/2017 2:00:00 AM
Are you talking about rug or throw rug like ?? Its a type of bedding commonly used here in Australia!
Date: 1/16/2011 9:38:00 AM
GO! Jimbo! You coulda tore up a politican? But Randies more fun!
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Date: 1/16/2011 9:11:00 AM
my Catholic guilt wonders at my choice of limerick.....but, fortunately! I blame it on you! now I feel better! jimbo
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Date: 1/16/2011 8:47:00 AM
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Date: 1/16/2011 8:44:00 AM
There was a rich pig from PalmSprings/Who had passions for bracelets and rings./He displayed his collection/Around his midsection/By means of strong wires and strings.
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Date: 1/16/2011 8:34:00 AM
So compilcated that it seems impossible..Sara
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Date: 1/15/2011 2:14:00 PM
LOL Linda you're a "stitch!" check your soup mail oh naughty one!
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Date: 1/15/2011 2:07:00 PM
Well I got my Limerick on in the middle of the night and entered Debbie so good luck with this great idea for a super contest... this was so fun luv..
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Date: 1/15/2011 12:58:00 PM
Yes Carolyn I know it takes a very brave person to write limericks for me ;)
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Date: 1/15/2011 12:48:00 PM
Please, let us all stop "torturing" limericks. LOL Had fun writing for your contest, Deb, and hope I got your prescribed meter right. You know I'm just in it for laughs. :) Love, Carolyn
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Date: 1/15/2011 11:14:00 AM
I think Chris maybe writing a book?
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Date: 1/15/2011 11:14:00 AM
I'm glad someones SEES the JOKE in a banana limerick about pocket rockets????
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Date: 1/15/2011 10:38:00 AM
HI, Deb, I think mine is semi-traditional and to let you know, I sure took your banana pictures to heart. hahaha. LUv,Andrea
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Date: 1/15/2011 7:16:00 AM
Hi Debbie :) so cool of you to write and inform us about limericks-- I have to admit I find writing limericks pretty challenging-- never can seem to write a decent one (I mean in form and stuff?) the first limerick I wrote was here at the Soup for Moses' contest-- thanks for this very informative blog :) I hope I can write one on time! btw I think Chris would love your contest! I remember he went on a limerick rampage before, he seemed to enjoy writing it--where is limerick guy???? hugs to you -- nikko :)
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Book: Shattered Sighs