How to write a limerick poem?

Limerick PoemsEveryone has heard of limerick poems at one point or another. They are impossible to miss in grade school, but maybe you are not exactly aware of the term. A limerick is a simple poem that has a good rhythm and a clever ending. By rule, a limerick contains five lines and follows the AABBA rhyme scheme. That simply means that the last word in the first, second and fifth lines need to rhyme and the last word in the third and fourth lines need to rhyme. It is also a general rule that the A’s should have seven to ten syllables and the B’s should have five to seven.

This type of poem should sound pleasant to the ear. You should also try to have the same number of syllables in the first and last line. This helps the poem begin and end with the same rhythm. After writing a limerick, try reading it aloud. You should be able to tell if your poem flows by its tempo. Although the overall point of a limerick poem is to detail a clever little story, you must make sure that it sounds good as far as the rhythm and flow is concerned.

After you have figured out how to form the words around the layout you’re looking for, you will have to work on the final punch line. It can be humorous or it can be a creative play on words. With practice, you can even make one that is both. Sometimes people find it difficult to figure out their last word for the poem, so it is usually better to start at the end and work your way up. That just means, come up with your punch line first, and the rest should fall into place easily.

If you are not much of a “word wizard” you can call upon an online rhyming dictionary to help you with your lines. A thesaurus can help as well. You would be surprised at how many synonyms there are for many words. Using these two online resources can cut your poem writing time in half.

Poems are a great way to express how you feel, but limericks are designed to add a comical twist at the end. Do not be afraid to test the words and make them become what you want them to be. Either way, coming up with your own limerick poems is a fun and easy way to get your brain working.




Writing Limericks, Step by Step

Step One and Two – Lines 1&2 –
Find a subject you want to write about, decide on the location of the poem, and the gender of the subject. When deciding on the location of the poem, you will want to select something that is easy to rhyme with. This will help decide how your last punch line will be delivered.

Step Three – Line 5 –
You have to decide what your character will do. Are they going somewhere? Are they going to be feeling a certain emotion? There is where your little poem develops the story. This is your chance to bring out the creativity and humor.
Lines one, two, and five should always rhyme with the limerick style. Lines three and four should rhyme. If you have a hard time finding words to fill in the blanks, try an online rhyming dictionary and a thesaurus. These are valuable tools that can help limerick writing go quickly.

Step Four and Five – Lines 3 & 4 –
You will need to come up with the “internal rhyme” of the poem. Lines three and four are a chance to break up the monotony of the poem. These are witty and sometimes it may help to work backward in order to make everything rhyme properly.

Once you finish up your limerick poem, it should sound something like this:

There once a young girl from Cali
Who was referred to as Sally
She enjoyed eating food
Though she was often rude
One night she was thrown out in an ally

It really is that easy. Just follow these simple steps and try doing a limerick yourself. With enough practice limericks will become second nature.