May 12 is National Limerick Day! Now what is a limerick, you say? It is a short poem, with a silly rhyme tone, that will surely shoo-away your dismay!
If you caught that little ditty, it was a sample of a limerick poem, and if you’d like to inject a little arts, culture and creativity into your free time we challenge you to write one of your own and celebrate National Limerick Day on Tuesday, May 12!
Limericks were made famous by Edward Lear in his first edition of The Book of Nonsense, originally published in 1846, that helped to popularize the kooky genre of literary nonsense that Dr. Seuss was also famous for. The standard form of a limerick is a stanza of five lines, with the first, second and fifth rhyming with one another, having 8-9 syllables each. The distinctly shorter third and fourth lines also rhyme with each other, but not the rest, and have only 5-6 syllables. Limericks always follow a strict AABBA rhyme pattern to make it easy for the reader to anticipate the usually amusing punch line at the end.
Limericks can also teach emerging readers how rhythmic language works. It helps them to notice and break down the sounds within words and when children are familiar with their favourite nursery rhyme or rhyming story, they learn to anticipate the upcoming rhyming word. This prepares them to make predictions when they read, another critical reading skill that leads to reading and writing success.
Perhaps one day you or your youngsters will take a place in the world of arts and culture and become authors, storytellers, songwriters, or wordsmiths, so break out that dusty box of sidewalk chalk, bust a rhyme, and become an amateur street-side poet. Soak in the spring, get outside and spread some community cheer for your local street mates with this COVID-19 limerick below, or craft your own little verse on National Limerick Day (Tuesday, May 12), take a photo and share with us @TourismBrantford on Facebook and Instagram or @VisitBrantford on Twitter.
There once was a virus worldwide,
That kept all the people inside,
Away from their friends,
Praying it would soon end,
So their troubles and fears would subside.
To slow the spread of COVID-19 in our community, the City of Brantford has closed all City facilities and prohibited use of all outdoor amenities including playground structures, benches, picnic tables, public exercise equipment, etc. While people who are not providing frontline essential services are urged to stay home, we recognize that people will occasionally need outdoor exercise breaks. The City’s parks and trails remain open for walking, jogging and biking (on applicable trails), however, strict physical distancing guidelines (remaining 6 ft apart from others) MUST be practiced at all times in public.