View Full Version : Clerihew thread

December 17th, 2013, 01:40 AM
A clerihew is a whimsical, four-line poem of flexible meter/scansion and irregular line-length, but always with an A-A-B-B rhyming pattern.

It's typically "biographical" in content.

They were invented by Edmund Clerihew Bentley.

Here's one of his well-known ones (written in 1905) ...

Sir Christopher Wren
Said "I am going to dine with some men.
If anyone calls
Say I am designing St. Paul's."

Clerihews normally show their subject from an abnormal/whimsical perspective.

The subject-matter and words can be humorously contrived in order to achieve the rhymes, and Latin/French/other foreign wording can also be used for this objective.

Here's one I wrote myself about the very well-known retired British politician Tony Benn ...

Tony Benn
Makes some very perceptive comments in his diaries now and then.
He's been writing and publishing them since he was about five
And he's obviously going to keep doing so for as long as he's still alive.

Here's another one of mine about a less well-known but very eccentric UK "TV personality" and inventor ...

Wilfred Makepeace Lunn
Counts inventing unorthodox bicycles among the many strange things he's done.
My grandfather says he used to appear on television fifty years ago with Sylvester McCoy
Often demonstrating some kind of weird toy.

I'll set the thread going with another one of my own, and then we can see who's going to be brave enough to start making them up and posting them. http://www.clicksmilies.com/s1106/grinser/grinning-smiley-018.gif

December 17th, 2013, 01:41 AM
Edmund Clerihew Bentley
Started off this typically biographical, whimsical form of verse pretty gently
He was never very satirical or abusive at all
But many others followed him and they had a ball.

December 17th, 2013, 01:47 AM
Here's another, about the British writer Will Self (once famous for taking illegal drugs on the Prime Minister's plane during an election campaign when he was working as a journalist, and currently Professor of Modern Thought at Brunel University, just west of London) ...

William Woodard Self
Has managed to get quite a few of his books onto my shelf.
On the subject of his previous heroin addiction he became a confessor
And now they've made him a professor. http://www.clicksmilies.com/s1106/sprachlos/speechless-smiley-003.gif

December 29th, 2013, 04:02 AM
James Tiberius Kirk
Was a captain who strode with a smirk.
He made a bit of a splash in his day
But the ripples were felt decades away.

December 29th, 2013, 03:00 PM
The famous Edgar Allen Poe
A classic author if you didn't happen to know.
No one reads him unless they have to
But he's iconic as the guy who says "boo".

December 30th, 2013, 03:22 AM
Admiral Lord Horatio Nelson
As a hero was quite a sensation
His statue soared upward into the sky
Higher than pigeons would fly?

December 30th, 2013, 03:56 AM
Marshal "Eminem" Mathers
Formely known as a vanilla rapper
Though he didn't write ice ice baby
He really is a real slim shady

December 30th, 2013, 01:04 PM
Nat King Cole
Was rather a kind old soul.
An outstanding jazz pianist, singer, and even something of a politician
He deserves some posthumous recognition.

December 31st, 2013, 04:30 AM
Nat King Cole
Was rather a kind old soul.
An outstanding jazz pianist, singer, and even something of a politician
He deserves some posthumous recognition.

His daughter was hot too.:joyous:

John Wesley Harding
Was quietly true to his calling
Sadly eulogized by Dylan
He suffers the torments of heaven

Olly Buckle
December 31st, 2013, 10:23 AM
Gerard Winstanley's political notion
Envisiaged a new, and quite different, nation,
He set up the colonies known as 'diggers'
But the government sent troops and they never got bigger.

December 31st, 2013, 12:10 PM
Michael Platt Winstanley
Was a doctor and a Liberal MP and once went to Cranley.
He also used to visit Norway and mess around in the fjords,
Eventually he became Baron Winstanley, when he joined the House of Lords.

Olly Buckle
December 31st, 2013, 09:25 PM
The Reverend Martin Luther King
Was addressed by friends who said 'here's a thing,
If you carry on thus you are bound to be shot',
and the Reverend King replied 'How can I not?'

January 1st, 2014, 12:44 PM
Oliver Buckle
Is quietly having a little chuckle.
He's the author of A Read For The Train so maybe he's a commuter?
Anyway I bet he wrote at least some of it on his computer.

January 6th, 2014, 12:11 AM
Hubert Horatio Humphrey
Sounds a little like 'bats in the belfry'.
The New Deal's last gasp before Nixon,
Some think the whole system needs fixin'.

January 11th, 2014, 04:26 PM
Anthony James Aloysius Ponsonby-Smythe
Managed never to be taken alive.
By the time they captured his head
He was undeniably stone dead.

May 1st, 2014, 01:48 AM
I had this girl, I had her friend
My heart was on the mend.
I'm ready now for true romance
With whom to take a chance

February 5th, 2018, 12:57 AM
Winter storm and my feet are cold
where’s my slippers, that dog is bold
Hot blue mug of treasure tea
how ‘bout a taste of French brandy

February 20th, 2018, 01:07 AM
I enjoyed indoors on the rainy day
cooked and cleaned and snuggled away
but to my surprize from the corner of my eye
flew a small brown insect who I let outside

February 21st, 2018, 01:44 PM
Kathleen Kenyon, in case you didn't know
Said she was going to Bangalow and Jericho

And if anyone phones
Say I'm digging up bones

Olly Buckle
February 22nd, 2018, 08:31 AM
With a given name of Kellyanne
Conway must be American
Her alternative to truth is 'true'
Miss Kellyanne, I don't trust you.

Olly Buckle
February 22nd, 2018, 09:28 AM
His name is Michael Flynn
There must be some Irish in him,
And his talk to the Russians
He’d completely forgotten.

February 22nd, 2018, 12:13 PM
Christina Georgina Rossetti
her poems like wind-blown confetti

kissing the bride, taking flight with rhyme
yet only for the briefest of time

Olly Buckle
February 23rd, 2018, 12:09 AM
A right wing diva, supporter
Whose name is Anne Coulter
Said 'You're not an ordinary civillian
You simply can't hire your children.'

Olly Buckle
February 23rd, 2018, 12:55 AM
Jailed for tax evasion,
Witness tampering, illegal donations
Was old Charlie Kushner
Young Jared’s father.

Mr Trump'sentourage are proving quite a rich vein :)

February 28th, 2018, 01:25 PM
eminent scientist Albert Einstein
rewriting the rules of space and time
if anyone knocks
tell them I'm slowing down clocks