As with the pun, appreciation of the limerick is a cultivated taste. I’m still working on it, very intermittently.
Ernest W. Lefever has put together a little collection of 230 of them in Liberating the Limerick (Hamilton Books). There is, for instance, this:
The fabulous Wizard of Oz
Retired from his business becoz
What with up-to-date science
To most of his clients
He wasn’t the Wizard he woz.
There was a faith-healer from Deal
Who said: “Though my pain isn’t real
If I sit on a pin,
And it punctures my skin
I dislike what I fancy I feel.”
The Devil, who plays a large part,
Has tricked his way into your heart
By simple insistence
On his non-existence,
Which really is devilish smart.
Limericks have a bad reputation—or, in the view of some, a good reputation—for being naughty. For instance:
A bather whose garments were strewed
On the beach where she bathed in the nude
Saw a man come along
And, unless I’m quite wrong,
You expected this line to be lewd.
There’s a whole book of them where those came from. Probably Lefever did not include this by W. H. Auden because it isn’t a true limerick, but I can’t resist passing it along:
To the man in the street, who, I’m sorry to say,
Is a keen observer of life,
The word intellectual suggests right away
A man who’s untrue to his wife.
I promise. That’s it for light verse in this space. At least for a while.
In addition to which :
Massachusetts demanded that Catholic Charities place adoptive children with same-sex couples, and, in response, Catholic Charities opted out of the important work of adoption. In the June/July issue of First Things , Gregory Popcak explains what went wrong and why it is both courageous and compassionate to insist that adoptive children have both a mother and a father. Isn’t it time for you to subscribe to First Things ?