All Rights Reserved
A COMPILATION OF THE BEST LIMERICKS FROM THE PEN OF PIERCE
EVANS, Copyright © 1996 by Pierce Evans. All rights reserved. These
limericks may not be individually or collectively reproduced or utilized
in any form or by any means, electronic, or mechanical, including photocopying,
recording, or by any information storage and retrieval systems, without
permission in writing from the author.
Inquiries should be addressed to:
Pierce Evans, One 6th Street, St.Augustine Beach, FL, 32080 -
When limerick writers convene,
Their reason for making the scene,
Is to make tepid jokes,
Meant for church going folks,
Into verses perverse and obscene.
The limerick is a unique art form. For openers, it works very well as a lyric to a familiar old bawdy ballad which, by now, has literally tens of thousands of verses as a result of the widespread appeal of this form of verse. Unfortunately, the subtleties of a skillfully crafted limerick are lost on the crude, rowdy, and vulgar habitues of pubs, bars, and taverns where this ballad is usually sung.
Someone once said that he had heard good limericks and had heard clean limericks but that he had never heard a good clean limerick. There is more than a little truth to that. A limerick can be and, in the opinion of the author, should be risque without offending the majority of its readers.
However, filth for filth's sake has no place in any literature, even in a compilation of limericks.
A good limerick has much in common with a good pun. Listeners are often inclined to groan aloud but wish in their secret hearts that they had come up with it themselves, or, they may insist that they have heard it before (so it obviously must have been plagiarized).
This is understandable when one considers how few words rhyme with one another, how limited the number of basic plots concerning the things that can go on among the creatures and inanimate objects of this world, and how limited the structural framework of a limerick.
Certainly it is not unreasonable that many authors have, at different places and times, come up with very similar, if not identical, limericks. I have occasionally written limericks that were original, to the best of my knowledge, only to find that they, or something very close to them, had already been published. I have excluded these from this compilation, but if the only similarity was in the basic premise or in the rhyming scheme, I have included them, especially if I honestly (if not immodestly) believe mine to be superior.
At an early age I was seduced by the amazing economy of the limerick. Novelists often take several hundred pages to deliver one more iteration of the "boy meets girl, boy loses girl, boy gets girl" theme. The limerick, on the other hand, in just five lines, establishes a character (sometimes more than one), develops a plot, and then resolves it, hopefully with a surprise twist or ending.
A limerick can be composed even during an evening ride home in an unlighted Long Island Railroad train by anyone with a five-line attention span. There were lots of those rides and, with the delays, there was often time to massage and hone a limerick until satisfied.
It only took a minute to write it down before dinner (a good idea since I did forget a few of them over night).
A good limerick often includes a double entendre, clever interior rhymes, and may take outrageous liberties with abbreviations, meter, rhymes, punctuation, spelling, and grammar.
There are many who dislike limericks because they are prudes and others who simply don't like poetry although it is doubtful that many serious poets (even those who write them), would consider a limerick poetry.
Personally, I don't like to read too many limericks at one sitting. I miss too much. I prefer to nibble on one or two now and then and savor the nuances rather than stuff them in like fast food hamburgers and come away with cerebral indigestion.
It is suggested that you take them a little bit at the time and enjoy. You might even start to like them.
Bon Appétit !