Jim and I have always entertained ourselves with word games. We trade homophones and puns. We used to play Scrabble and do crossword puzzles together. On one road trip shortly after we met, we passed the miles by making up limericks. The limericks with which I was familiar at the time often had a bawdy intent. I won’t give you an example, as when I googled an opening line, the results were much more explicit than I bargained for.

A limerick actually is a form of verse, which depends on the rhythm and syllables, and not on the subject matter. For example, the nursery rhyme “Hickory Dickory Dock” is a limerick.

Hickory dickory dock
The mouse ran up the clock
The clock struck one
And down he run
Hickory dickory dock.

According to,

Typically, the first two lines rhyme with each other, the third and fourth rhyme together, and the fifth line either repeats the first line or rhymes with it. The limerick’s anapestic rhythm is created by an accentual pattern that contains many sets of double weakly-stressed syllables. The pattern can be illustrated with dashes denoting weak syllables, and back-slashes for stresses:

1) – / – – / – – /
2) – / – – / – – /
3) – / – – /
4) – / – – /
5) – / – – / – – /

Subject matter is not important; form is.

Inspired by a friend, I thought about writing new limericks.

Quilt judges, they value precision
When making a contest decision
“Not me!” said one quilter
“I’ll cut mine off-kilter”
To all of the judges’ derision.


The star is a favorite design.
Ohio and evening are mine.
Yes either will do
Of scraps or of new
A quilt that will sparkle and shine.


The rotary cutter is cool.
But it is a dangerous tool.
So sharp is the blade
That a slip of it made
Me feel like a darn bleeding fool.

Can you add any limericks to the list?


22 thoughts on “Limericks

  1. Pingback: Creativie Juice #68 | ARHtistic License

  2. snarkyquilter

    Here goes. Clean limericks are hard.
    My scraps seemed to pile up too fast
    My brain looked for ways to recast.
    “Make art from those bits,
    They’re sure to be hits
    Once all my hard labor has passed.”

  3. katechiconi

    I simply don’t have the brain
    To make quilt mathematics quite plain
    But Melanie M
    Can provide you the sum
    Which will totally take up the strain!
    (with apologies!)

  4. Chela's Colchas y Mas

    Let’s master the quarter inch seam!
    It can make one smile and beam
    To have to rip and redo
    Causes quite a big hullabaloo
    Let’s master the quarter inch seam!

    My fabric bins are overflowing!
    Oh, my, the stash is actually growing
    The fabric fairies must have visited me once more
    I do not remember going to a fabric store
    My fabric bins are overflowing!

  5. Kerry

    Had a good laugh there. Also love the rotary cutter one. I agree when playing with our children the results were very much in the toilet type of humour. But not played with limericks for years.


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