Limericks

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Some poetry is governed by very strict rules.
A haiku has exactly seventeen syllables, no more, no less.
If it has not it is not a haiku, it may be a good poem,
it may be satisfying, it may be beautiful - but it is NOT a haiku.

Similarly a limerick has a very strictly defined form.
The vocabulary, or even the language used, is open -
but if it does not have the correct structure it is not a limerick

The classic limerick is an anapestic trimeter of five lines with the rhyming scheme AABBA.
It is possible, although not the classic form, to replace all the anapests with amphibrachs,
but they cannot be mixed.

(The anapest [or anapaest] is a beat of UUS [Unstressed-Unstressed-Stressed] -
not to be confused with a dactyl [SUU] which should not be used in limericks.
The amphibrach is a beat of USU.)

There are three beats in the first, second and fifth lines of a limerick
and two in the third and fourth:-

Diddy-DUM diddy-DUM diddy-DUM
Diddy-DUM diddy-DUM diddy-DUM
Diddy-DUM diddy-DOM
Diddy-DUM diddy-DOM
Diddy-DUM diddy-DUM diddy-DUM

An extra syllable or a syllable fewer may sometimes be tolerated
if all the lines with the same rhyme have the same structure.

I have collected Limericks for a long time, and memorised a fairly
lethal assortment for discharging at inopportune moments.

To meet my exacting criteria a Limerick must rhyme and scan correctly
(or, if it doesn't, it must be exceptionally funny and the lack
of rhyme and scansion should be deliberate).

I have no objection, per se, to obscenity, but mere obscenity
is tasteless (IMHO) and I insist that the obscene Limericks
in my collection be at least funny and, preferably, funny and clever.

Here are some Limericks meeting my demanding criteria:-


There once was a fellow called "James",
Who liked to make puns and play games.
He liked limericks best,
And was never a pest,
But knew lots of folks with weird names.
(Dena Norton - Thank you Dena!)
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There was a young girl from Madras
Who had a most beautiful ass
Not rounded and pink
As you probably think
But grey, with long ears, and ate grass.
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There was a young man from Aberystwyth
Took a girl to his room to play whist with,
At the very first trick
He whipped out his prick
And united the organs they pissed with.
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There was a young man from Woods Hole
Who had an affair with a mole
Though a bit of a nancy
He did like to fancy
Himself in the dominant role.
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There was an old man of Devizes
Whose balls were of different sizes,
The one that was small
Was no use at all
But the other was huge and won prizes.
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There once was a curate from kew,
Who kept a black cat in a pew,
He taught it to speak
Alphabetical Greek,
But it never got further than mu.
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An unfortunate fellow called Giles
Had the ugliest bottom for miles;
But a surgeon took pity
And made it quite pretty:
All dimples, and poutings, and smiles.
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While Titian mixed his rose-madder
His model posed nude on a ladder;
Her position, to Titian,
Suggested coition
So he mounted the ladder, and had her.
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Ethnologists up with the Sioux
Wired home for two punts, one canoe.
The answer, next day,
Said "GIRLS ON THE WAY
BUT WHAT THE HELL'S A PANOE?"
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There was a young man who said, "Damn!
It is borne upon me that I am
But a being that moves
In predestinate grooves -
I'm not even a bus, I'm a tram.
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Anon., Idem, Ibid. and Trad.
Wrote much that is morally bad:
Some ballads, some shanties,
ALL poems on panties -
And limericks, too, one must add.
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There was a young lady named Bright
Whose speed was far faster than light;
She went out one day,
In a relative way,
And returned the previous night.
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An Anglican vicar in want
Of a second-hand portable font
Would exchange for the same
A portrait (with frame)
Of the bishop-elect of Vermont.
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There was a young girl from Darjeeling
Who could dance with such exquisite feeling
Not a murmur was heard,
Not a sound, not a word,
But the fly-buttons hitting the ceiling.
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Concerning the bees and the flowers
In the fields and the gardens and bowers,
You will note at a glance
That their ways of romance
Haven't any resemblance to ours.
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A passionate couple named Kelly
Mistook glue for petroleum jelly.
From kissing and hugging
To twisting and tugging
But still they stayed belly to belly.
(Jack Bryant - NC)
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There was a young fellow called Hyde
Who fell down a sewer and died.
His unfortunate brother
Fell down another
And now they're interred side by side.
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Despite her impressive physique
Fatima was really quite meek;
If a mouse showed its head
She would jump into bed
With a terrible blood-curdling sheik.
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Said a green cabin-dweller called Cade
"Shit surely will bio-degrade
Since I've no indoor plumbing
When a crap is a-coming
I'll head for the woods with a spade."
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There once was a man from U. Mass.
With testicles made out of brass.
When he banged them together
They played "Stormy Weather"
And lightning shot out of his ass.
(Donald L. Davidson)
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There was a young miss from St. Paul
Who went to the newspaper ball
Her dress caught on fire
And exposed her entire
Front page, sporting section and all.
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There once was a fellow called Nuttter
Who went for a shit in the gutter
The rays of the sun
Baptized his bare bum
And converted the shit into butter.
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There was a young girl of Penzance
Who decided to take just one chance.
So she let herself go
In the arms of her beau;
Now all of her sisters are aunts.
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There once was a fellow from Boston
Who drove a diminutive Austin
It had room for his ass
And a tankful of gas
But his balls dangled out, and he lost 'em!
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There was a young man of Japan
Whose limericks never would scan.
When they asked him why,
He said, with a sigh,
"It's because I always try to get as many words into the last line as I possibly can."
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There once was a man from Racine
Who built a fine screwing machine.
Concave or convex,
It would screw any sex.
But it was a bastard to clean.
(Richard Singer)
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There was a young man of Siam
Whose poetry never would scan.
He wrote a poem
About "Home, Sweet Home"
And the rhymes were lousy too.
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There's a wonderful family Stein,
There's Gertrude, there's Ep, and there's Ein.
Gert's poetry's bunk,
Ep's statues are junk,
And no one can understand Ein.
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A hillbilly farmer called Hollis
Used possums and snakes for his solace.
His offspring had scales
And prehensile tails
And voted for Govenor Wallace.
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If intercourse gives you thrombosis
While continence causes neurosis,
I prefer to expire
Fulfilling desire
Than live on in a state of psychosis.
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There once was a young man called Treet
Who minced as he walked down the street.
He wore shoes of bright red
And he playfully said,
"I may not be strong, but I'm sweet."
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There was a young girl from St. Cyr
Whose reflex reactions were queer.
Her escort said, "Mabel
Get up off the table;
That money's to pay for the beer.
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The was an old man of Khartoum
Who kept a giraffe in his room.
"It reminds me," he said,
"Of a friend who is dead,
But I cannot remember of whom."
------------------------------------------------------
Of a sudden the great prime donna
Cried, "Gawd, but my voice is a goner!"
But a cat in the wings
Said, "I know how she sings,"
And finished the solo with honour.
------------------------------------------------------
An amorous M.A.
Said of Cupid, the C.D.,
"From their prodigal use
He Is, I deduce,
The John Jacob A.H."
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If Leo your own birthday marks
You will lust until forty, when starts
A new pleasure in stamps,
Boy Scouts and their camps,
And fondling nude statues in parks.
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There once was a lassie called Jeanie
Whose dad was a terrible meanie:
He fashioned a latch
And a hatch for her snatch
She could only be had by Houdini.
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There was a young lady called Grace
Who had eyes in a very odd place.
She could sit on the hole
Of a mouse or a mole
And stare the beast square in the face.
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I once thought a lot of a friend
Who turned out to be in the end
The southernmost part
(As I'd feared from the start)
Of a horse with a northerly trend.
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The limerick packs laughs anatomical
Into space that is quite economical.
But the good ones I've seen
So seldom are clean
And the clean ones so seldom are comical.
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The limerick is furtive and mean;
You must keep it in close quarantine,
Or it sneaks to the slums
And promptly becomes
Disorderly, drunk and obscene.
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It needn't have ribaldry's taint
Or strive to make everyone faint.
There's a type that's demure
And perfectly pure
Though it helps quite a lot if it ain't.
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The limerick, peculiar to English,
Is a verse-form that's hard to extinguish.
Once Congress in session
Decreed its supression
But people got around it by writing the last line without any rhyme or metre.
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There was a young lady of Norway
Who hung by her heels in a doorway
And called to her man,
Sitting on the divan,
"Come quick, I've discovered one more way."
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There was a young plumber of Leigh
Was plumbing a maid by the sea.
Said the maid, "Cease your plumbing,
I think someone's coming."
Said the plumber, still plumbing, "It's me!"
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The Rajah of Afganistan
Imported a Birmingham can
Which he set as a throne
On a great Buddha stone
But he crapped out of doors like a man.
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A pathetic old maid of Bordeaux
Fell In love with a handsome young beau;
To arrest his regard
She would squat in the yard
And appealingly piss in the snow.
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A nubile young Nubian nun
Raised up her black habit for fun
But though she was bare
Underneath, none knew where
Nude nun ended and habit began.
(Tony Davie)
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A marvellous race are the Jocks
Who run whooping through glens in check frocks
For they say: 'Wearing breeks
Makes it harder for leaks
And the philibeg leaves us free cocks.' (Tony Davie)
Note for Sassenachs:
A philibeg is a combination kilt/cloak worn by lying down and rolling up in it - a kind of Scottish sari!
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There was a young lady of Chichester
Who made all the saints in their niches stir.
One morning at matins
Her breasts in white satin
Made the Bishop of Chichester's britches stir.
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There was a young man from the coast
Who had an affair with a ghost.
At the height of orgasm
The fair ectoplasm
Said, "Ooh! I can feel it - almost."
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She wasn't what you would call pretty,
And other girls offered her pity:
You would never have guessed
That her Wasserman test
Involved half the men of the city.
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A pansy who came from Khartoum
Took a lesbian up to his room
She said "Settle one thing
Now, before we begin,
Who does what, and with which, and to whom?"
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It was just as I feared it would be
I sat next to the duchess at tea
Her rumblings abdominal
Were simply phenomenal
And everyone thought it was me.
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There was a young fellow from Kent
Whose prick was so long that it bent,
To save himself trouble
He put it in double -
And instead of coming, he went,
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There was a young woman from Devon
Was raped in a garden by seven
High Anglican priests,
The lascivious beasts.
Of such is the Kingdom of Heaven.
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A habit both vile and unsavoury
Kept the Bishop of Oxford in slavery.
With bestial howls
He would bugger young owls
Which he kept in an underground aviary.
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There was a young man from St. Just
Who, consumed with erotical lust,
Raped the Bishop's prize fowls,
His precious young owls,
And a little green lizard, what bust.
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From the depths of the crypt at St. Giles
Came a scream that resounded for miles.
Said the vicar "Good Gracious!
Has Brother Ignatius
Forgotten the Bishop has piles?"
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There was a young lady from Crewe
Who said, as the curate withdrew,
"I'll stick to the Vicar
He's slicker and quicker
And three inches thicker than you".
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There was a young maid of Baroda
Who built an erotic pagoda:
The walls of its halls
Were festooned with the balls
And the tools of the fools who bestrode her.
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Said then seventeenth Bey of Algiers,
To his harem assembled, "My dears,
You may think it odd of me,
But I'm tired of sodomy.
Tonight there'll be fucking." (Loud cheers!)
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A Christian Scientist from Theale
Said, "Though I know pain isn't real,
When I sit on a pin
And it punctures my skin
I dislike what I fancy I feel".
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A pretty young girl from Djakarta
Was widely acclaimed as a farter:
At the African sports
Her explosive reports
Brought her widespread acclaim as a starter.
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There was a young man from Adair
Was having his girl on the stair
At the twentyfirst stroke
The bannister broke
So he finished her off in the air.
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There was a young lady called Jane
Who liked a fuck now and again.
Not just now and again
But NOW!, and AGAIN!,
And AGAIN!, and AGAIN!, and AGAIN!
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The tits of a harlot called Dale
Were tattooed with the price of her tail,
And on her behind
For the sake of the blind
Was the same information in braille.
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There was a young Scot named McAmiter
Who bragged of excessive diameter;
Yet it wasn't the size
That opened their eyes
But the rhythm - trochaic hexameter.
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There was a young curate called Binns
Who preached about Heaven and things;
But his secret desire
Was a boy in the choir
With a bottom like jelly on springs.
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There was a young man from the zoo
Whose limericks stopped at line two.
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There was a young man from Verdun.
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There was a young man of Rangoon
Whose farts could be heard on the Moon
When you'd least expect 'em
They'd burst from his rectum
With the force of a raging typhoon.
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An innocent lass from Cape Cod
Believed that a child came from God:
But t'was not the Almighty
Who lifted her nightie
It was Roger the lodger, the sod.
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A gallant young gaucho called Bruno
Said "Sex is the one thing I do know.
While a woman is fine
And a sheep is divine
A llama's still numero uno."
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There once was a fellow named Newt
Who had nine fine warts on his root.
He put acid on these
And now, when he pees,
Newt tootles his root like a flute.
(Ross Carle:- Rcarle@gnn.com)
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There was a young fellow called Rex
With diminutive organs of sex:
Arraigned for exposure
He said with composure,
"De minimis non curat lex".

[Latin, trans:- "The law is not concerned with trifles."]

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A handsome young fellow called Fisk
Was at fucking exceedingly brisk,
So fast was his action
Fitzgerald contraction
Foreshortened his prick to a disc.
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A lovely young actress called Ransome
Was raped seven times In a hansom;
As she clamoured for more
Came a voice from the floor,
"The name, ma'am, is Simpson, not Samson."
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A policeman from North Clapham Junction
Whose penis had long ceased to function
Deceived his good wife
For the rest of her life
By the use of his constable's truncheon.
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There once was a sculptor named Phidias
Whose manners in art were invidious:
He carved Aphrodite
Without any nightie
Which startled the ultrafastidious.
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It's a favorite project of mine
A new value of pi to assign.
I would fix it at 3
For it's simpler, you see,
Then 3.14159.
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There was a young man who said "God
Must find it exceedingly odd
To see that this tree
Still continues to be
When there's no-one about in the quad".
------------------------------------------------------
Dear Sir, Your astonishment's odd;
I am always about in the quad;
And that's why the tree
Still continues to be
Since observed by, Yours faithfully, God.
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A book and a jug and a dame,
And a nice cosy nook for the same;
"And I don't care a damn,"
Said Omar Khayyam,
"What you say, it's a great little game."
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It always delights me at Hanks
To walk on the old river banks.
One time in the grass
I stepped on an arse
And heard a young girl murmur, "Thanks!"
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It's said that Medusa was celibate
And stayed that way just for the hell of it.
But the feminine organ
Of this famous Gorgon
Had snake-bites where each scaly fella bit.
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The ancients' enigma, old Zeno,
Adjourned to a gambling casino.
He successfully proved
That the wheel never moved
And won every roulette game in Reno.
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There's an orchestra playing in Beale
Whose conductor is far from ideal.
To conclude a sonata,
He starts the fermata,
Then leaves for a seven-course meal.
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There was a young lady named Harris
Whom nothing could ever embarrass
'Til the salts that she shook
In the bath that she took
Turned out to be Plaster of Paris.
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In Wall Street a girl called Irene
Made an offering somewhat obscene;
She stripped herself bare
And offered a share
To Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Bean.
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There was a young fellow of Buckingham
Who stood on the old bridge at Uckingham
Watching the stunts
Of the cunts in the punts
And the tricks of the pricks that were fucking 'em.
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A remarkable race are the Persians
With many erotic diversions.
They make love all day
In the regular way,
And save up the nights for perversions.
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There once was a virgin of Siam
Who said to her lover, young Klam,
"If you take-me, of course,
You must do it by force,
But God knows you are stronger than I am."
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There was a young lady named Smith
Whose virtue was mostly a myth.
She said, "Try as I can,
I can't find a man
Who it's fun to be virtuous with."
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There was once a monarch of Spain
Who was terribly haughty and vain;
When women were nigh
He'd unbutton his fly
And have them with sneers of disdain.
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A bather whose clothing was strewed
By breezes that left her quite nude
Saw a man come along
And, unless I am wrong,
You expected this line to be rude.
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A tone-deaf old person from Tring
When somebody asked him to sing,
Repiled, "It is odd
But I cannot tell 'God
Save the Weasel' from 'Pop Goes the King.'"
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An old archeologist, Throstle,
Discovered a marvelous fossil
He knew from its bend
And the knob on the end
'Twas the peter of Paul the Apostle.
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There was a young man of high station
Who was found by a pious relation
Making love in a ditch
To - I won't say a bitch -
But a lady of NO reputation.
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There was a young curate of Salisbury
Whose manners were halisbury-scalisbury.
He walked about Hampshire
Without any pampshire
Till the vicar compelled him to walisbury.

[In the English Post Office the abbreviation for Hampshire is "Hants."
and that of Salisbury is "Sarum."]

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There once was a girl from Revere
So enormously large that, oh dear,
Far out on the ocean
Byrd raised a commotion
By planting our flag on her rear.
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There was a young girl of Odessa
Was a rather unblushing transgressor;
When sent to the priest
The lewd little beast
Began to undress her confessor.
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There was a young lady called Mabel
Who said, "I don't think that I'll be able;
But I'm willing to try
So where shall I lie
On the bed, or the floor, or the table?"
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There was a young lady of Kent
Who said that she knew what it meant
When men asked her to dine,
Gave her cocktails and wine:
She knew what it meant - but she went!
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There was a young maiden of Joppa
Who came a society cropper.
She went to Ostend
With a gentleman friend,
And the rest of the story's improper.
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A daring young lady of Guam
Observed, "The Pacific's so calm
I'll swim out for a lark."
But she met a large shark.
Let us now sing the Nintieth Psalm.
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The bashful young batchelor Cleary
Of girls was exceedingly leery;
Then a lady named Lou
Showed him how, and with who,
He could render his evenings more cheery.
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For the tenth time, dull Daphnis, said Chloe,
You have told me my bosom is snowy;
You've made too much verse on
Each part of my person,
Now DO something - there's a good boy!
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I wish that my room had a floor;
I don't care so much for a door;
But walking around
Without touching the ground
Is getting to be quite a bore.
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There was an old man of Dundee
Who molested an ape in a tree.
The result was quite horrid
All arse and no forehead,
Three balls and a purple goatee.
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There was an old fellow from Lyme
Who married three wives at a time;
When asked, "Why the third?"
He replied, "One's absurd!
And bigamy, sir, is a crime."
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There was a young lady called Anna,
Who decided she'd like a pianna.
Her mother said "No",
But bought her a po,
Saying "Now you can have a pee, Anna."
(Andrew Williams)
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A famous theatrical actress
Played best as a bad malefactress;
Yet her home life was pure
Except, to be sure,
A scandel or two, just for practice.
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A venturesome three-week old chamois
Strayed off in the woods from his mamois,
And might have been dead
But some picknickers fed
Him with sandwiches, milk and salamois.
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There was a young man from the city
Who met what he thought was a kitty.
He gave it a pat
And said "Nice little cat."
They buried his clothes, out of pity.
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A lady, while dining at Crewe,
Found an elephant's whang in the stew.
Said the waiter, "Don't shout,
Or wave it about,
Or the others will all want one too."
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A team playing baseball in Dallas
Called the umpire names out of malice.
While that worthy had fits
The team made eight hits
And a girl In the bleachers named Alice.
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There was a young lady from Cham
Who smiled as she entered a tram.
When she had embarked
The conductor remarked
"Your fare" and she said "Yes, I am."
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There was a young fellow called Binn
Who was so excessively thin
That when he essayed
To drink lemonade
He slipped through the straw and fell in.
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You must get it up, to begin.
Or else, you will not get it in.
If you will allow
I will just show you how:
Keep your head down - and aim for the pin.
(Tony Davie, St.Andrews University)
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A lady called Marie-Christine
One day on the ski-slopes was seen
Lift fees were so high
That she said with a sigh
"By the evening I hadn't a bean!"
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To a person arriving in Heaven
Said St. Peter, "We dine, sharp, at seven,
Then breakfast's at eight,
Never mind if you're late,
And there's biscuits and milk at eleven."
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To compose a sonata today
Do not do it the usual way:-
Take your seat on the keys
Jump about as you please.
"Oh! How modern!" the critics will say.
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An engineer peripatetic
Endowed with a keen sense esthetic
Drank beer in most places
Except U.S. bases
"For their beer," said he, "is pathetic."
(A biographical comment from my friend Paula Sanch.)
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There once was a statement of mission,
Of energy, fusion, and fission,
The words were just fine,
In fact, quite divine,
But the content was met with derision.
(A comment on management from my friend Dena Norton.)
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There was a young man from Bombay
Making fireworks one fine Summer's day
But he dropped his cigar
In the gunpowder jar.
There was a young man from Bombay.
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There was a young fellow called Bliss
Whose sex life was rather amiss
For even with Venus
His poor little penis
Would never do better than
t
h
i
s
.
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A rude nude hetaira from Bude
Was wooed by a lewd dude called Jude
They queued for stewed food
To put her in the mood
Then they screwed and they screwed and they screwed.
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Send me a Limerick

If I like it I'll post it, but as I mentioned above, a Limerick must rhyme and scan correctly (or, if it doesn't, it must be exceptionally funny and the lack of rhyme and correct metre should be deliberate) to meet my exacting criteria. I have no objection, per se, to obscenity, but mere obscenity is tasteless (IMHO) and I insist that the obscene Limericks in my collection be at least funny and, preferably, funny and clever. If your rhyme and metre are less than ideal (IMO) I will surely edit your contribution before posting it.


Limerick city,Ireland
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