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Mid-month Every Month at PENSIEVE
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Finally!  After ruminating about a monthly poetry carnival for over a year, after weeks of building up to it, the long-awaited inauguration is HERE!  Thanks to all of you who’ve been brave enough to "pre-register".  Today, you’ll receive an explanation of the featured poetry form; over the next week, take some time to write it; then NEXT Monday, I’ll post a "Mr. Linky" and you can add the link to your submission (to avoid confusion, I’m not posting Mr. Linky until then…poems should be linked, not your blog’s home page).  If you’d like to pick up the button on this page, click the "Want this Button" and it’ll take you to the page where the code is located (there are two sizes–one for sidebars and one for post pages).   

I’ll be working on a PPL blogroll, but knowing me, that might take a little bit of time.

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Limericks.  Don’t they just make you GRIN?!  Weighing in at only five lines, they prove that poetic dynamite comes in small packages.  Limericks are intended to make you laugh, and while some of the more famous limericks are obscene, there’s something intrinsically humorous about its form and meter, and I don’t think you have to resort to bawdiness to get a smile.  Line five is key IMHO, and makes or breaks the limerick (I guess that’s why I write the first four lines with ease, then spend the majority of my time thinking of the punch line).

Limericks have been around for hundreds of years and were popularized in English with the publication of Edward Lear’s "Book of Nonsense" in 1845.  The origin of how limericks came to be known as such is inconclusive, but association to Limerick, Ireland is common. 

While there are more technical ways to describe writing a limerick, for our purposes, we’ll strive for simplicity.  The pattern is A A  B B A–but it’s the rhythm that gives this form its delight:  lines
1, 2 and 5 contain 3 beats and rhyme, and lines 3 and 4
have two beats and rhyme.  Need additional guidance?  This spells it out very clearly:

There was an old man from Peru, (A)
da DUM da da DUM da da DUM
who dreamed he was eating his shoe. (A)
da DUM da da DUM da da DUM
He awoke in the night (B)
da DUM da da DUM
with a terrible fright, (B)
da da DUM da da DUM
and found out that it was quite true. (A)
da DUM da da DUM da da DUM

So, ready to write your own?  You have a week to complete it, but PLEASE don’t make this more difficult than it is–Pensieve’s Poetic License is intended to be a fun exercise in linguistic creativity!  This month’s theme is "Thanksgiving"; broad enough to go in a thousand directions, but remember, since PPL’s motto is "No Rules.  Just WRITE!" you’re pretty much free to do as you please.

If you’re not sure whether or not you wanna do this, how ’bout for the limerick faint-of-heart, a little something to get you going?  I’ll give you the first four lines, you write a SMOKIN’ fifth!

The pilgrims, they started it all.
A feast fit for kings in the Fall.
Thankful were they,
Eating turkey all day

Mid-month Every Month at PENSIEVE
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