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Berenstain Bears. For Local Authors. My Book Box. Writing them takes a little practice at first, but before long you'll be addicted to coming up with these witty, whimsical rhymes. Article provided by wikiHow , a wiki how-to manual. Please edit this article and find author credits at the original wikiHow article on " How to Write a Limerick ".
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Sign In Don't have an account? Start a Wiki. Steps Edit Know the basic characteristics of a limerick. Rhyme scheme or pattern. A limerick has five lines; the first, second, and fifth rhyme with each other, and the third and fourth rhyme with each other a-a-b-b-a. Number of syllables. The first, second and fifth lines should have eight or nine syllables, while the third and fourth lines should have five or six. A limerick has a certain "rhythm" created by how the syllables are stressed. Here's an example note that the emphasis naturally falls on the italicized syllables : Twas the night before Christ mas and all through the house Amphibrachic meter - a long stressed syllable is sandwiched between two short ones duh-DUM-duh, duh-DUM-duh.
Example: There was a young la dy of Wan tage Lines can begin on two, one, or occasionally no unstressed beats. Some prefer to continue the rhythm across from one line to the next, especially when a sentence carries across lines, but this is not essential. Choose the ending of your first line, usually a geographical place.
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For instance, Pitts burgh. Note that the first syllable of Pittsburgh is stressed, resulting in one short syllable at the end of the line. Another example: New York. Note that the second syllable of New York is stressed. Think of lots of different things to rhyme with your first line ending. You'll appear funny, witty and clever this way.
Example 1: Because Pittsburgh is stressed on the first syllable, you'll have to rhyme with both syllables.
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First things that come to mind: kids lurk, zits work, bits jerk, hits perk, lit smirk, or maybe a different combination of these words. Example 2: Because New York is stressed on the second syllable, you only need to rhyme with that one. First things that come to mind: cork, pork, stork, fork. Write your own extensive list. Make associations with the rhyme words. Example 1: With words like kids and zits and private bits, you could go for a limerick about puberty. Example 2: Through the combination of cork, pork and fork, you could think about a limerick about a fancy dinner with lots of meat and wine.
Go through the list you created and think up little stories of what could have happened and how your ideas could be related. Pick a story that appeals to you, and decide on who the person s is you introduce in line 1. What is important about him or her? Do you focus on their profession or social status, or on age, health or particular stage in his or her life?
Example 1: For the Pittsburgh limerick, you could go for the word 'adolescent'. Example 2: For the New York limerick, you might be thinking of the word 'distinguished' with something following that. Make the first line nice and fitting with the meter. Example 1: Adolescent is stressed on the 3rd syllable.
Pittsburgh starts with a stressed syllable. This means we need one more long syllable at the start, and only have room for one short syllable between 'adolescent' and 'Pittsburgh'.