Chris Christie Wages War On Low-Wage Workers (Limerick)

October 22nd, 2014

Chris Christie Wages War On Low-Wage Workers (Limerick)
By Madeleine Begun Kane

Chris Christie says minimum wage
Is too boring — he’s on a new page.
Dare to mention that matter—
He’ll spew out rude chatter.
Suggest raising it? Brace for his rage.

Open Limerick To Political Pollsters

October 15th, 2014

Open Limerick To Political Pollsters
By Madeleine Begun Kane

Dear pollsters, you’re going to town
With predictions that force me to frown.
Each projection I hear
Feeds dejection. I fear
Evil clowns will be taking us down.

How I yearn for a spark that gives hope
And will somehow allow me to cope
With our national news
And the venom that spews.
Until then, I’ll continue to mope.

Supreme Surprise (Limerick)

October 6th, 2014

Supreme Surprise (Limerick)
By Madeleine Begun Kane

The SCOTUS has caused quite a din
Over gay marriage rights. Is it sin
Or just fine for the states
To say gays can be mates?
Its response is “We shouldn’t mix in.”

What To Do About Ebola? Don’t Ask Our Surgeon General (Limerick)

October 3rd, 2014

I’m looking forward to leadership from our Surgeon General, especially now that the Ebola outbreak has reached our nation.

Oh wait … we don’t have one. Why not? Because Vivek Murthy, Obama’s excellent nominee, has the audacity to view guns as a health issue.

What To Do About Ebola? Don’t Ask Our Surgeon General (Limerick)
By Madeleine Begun Kane

Though an expert on health would be nice
At this time of Ebola, no dice!
NRA’s GOP
Blocked a great nominee,
And our nation is paying the price.

Purloined Limerick

October 2nd, 2014

Please don’t rat me out. But while the Secret Service wasn’t looking, I swiped this limerick from President Obama’s desk:

Dear Republicans, thank you for caring.
I’m touched by the worries you’re airing.
Then again, you’ll concede
That my death might impede
Your aspersions on me, now unsparing.

Surplus Madness (Limerick)

October 1st, 2014

Have you ever wondered how police departments ended up looking like military units? An excellent Mother Jones article explains the method behind the madness, which I’ve tried to summarize in this limerick:

Surplus Madness (Limerick)
By Madeleine Begun Kane

Here’s why cops appear ready for war,
Stocked with Pentagon loaners galore:
Lend your surplus to cops,
And your storage cost drops.
Then make give-backs an arduous chore.

Open Limerick to Charlotte Clinton Mezvinsky

September 30th, 2014

Open Limerick to Charlotte Clinton Mezvinsky
By Madeleine Begun Kane

Dear Charlotte, I hope you’re prepared
For attacks, because war’s been declared.
Though you just got your name,
You’re a Clinton — fair game!
Newborn Hillary-heirs won’t be spared.

Happy Birthday To The Supremes (Limerick)

September 24th, 2014

Happy 225th birthday to the U.S. Supreme Court! (On Sept. 24, 1789 President George Washington signed the
Judiciary Act of 1789, which created a Supreme Court with six justices.)

Happy Birthday To The Supremes (Limerick)
By Madeleine Begun Kane

Seems today marks the birth of a court,
The court of supreme last resort.
Chief Justice John Jay
Ran it back in the day.
I just wish it would do what it ort.

Limerick Ode To “Poor” Eric Cantor

September 2nd, 2014

How’s this for a non-shocker: Ousted House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) is headed to Wall Street. Cantor is “joining investment bank Moelis & Co. as vice chairman and managing director” and “stands to earn $3.4 million in cash and stocks as a signing bonus, with $1.2 million guaranteed in just his first year.”

Limerick Ode To “Poor” Eric Cantor
By Madeleine Begun Kane

Though he lost to a Tea Party ranter,
Please feel free to stop weeping for Cantor,
Cuz he’s striking it rich.
Ain’t his life just a bitch?
Wall Street moolah is quite the enchanter.

Sleazy To The Core (Limerick)

August 27th, 2014

Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal, formerly a Common Core enthusiast, now claims that the U.S. Education Department’s initiative is an Obama “power-grab.” He’s even suing the federal government, in an appeal to wingnutty Tenthers.

Ka-ching!

Sleazy To The Core (Limerick)
By Madeleine Begun Kane

Bobby Jindal has filed a fed suit
To get Common Core given the boot:
Obama, claims Bob,
Did a power-grab job:
A prez wannabe, raising some loot.

Golf Wars (Limerick)

August 22nd, 2014

As a devout liberal, I’ve been pretty disappointed in Obama’s presidency. But the constant complaints about his letting off steam via golf are absurd.

To those who claim Obama’s too indifferent to public opinion, think about this: When no matter what you do you’re under constant (often nonsensical) attack, you might as well do what you want.

And don’t even get me started on the fact that most of the horror we’re embroiled in right now is a direct (or indirect) result of the war of choice in Iraq that George W. Bush (Mr. Vacation himself) lied us into.

Golf Wars (Limerick)
By Madeleine Begun Kane

When Obama goes golfing, the press
And the pols say the world’s in a mess,
So the prez should not play.
But they’ll bitch come what may.
So he might as well drive off some stress.

The Perils Of Perry (Limerick)

August 19th, 2014

Can you imagine Republicans ever questioning the legitimacy of a criminal case against a Democrat? Alas, that would take intellectual honesty. So don’t hold your breath.

On the other hand, many Democrats are openly questioning whether Rick Perry’s sleazy behavior rose to the level of a criminal act. As for me…

What’s a crime can be sometimes unclear.
Yes the law is confusing, I fear.
I’m a lawyer, but still
I’ve no skill, nor the will
To predict if this case will cohere.

Limerick Ode To “Awesome” Rick Perry

August 13th, 2014

Although Texas Governor Rick Perry hasn’t announced yet, it’s pretty clear that he’s planning to run for the GOP presidential nomination. Now I don’t know about you, but I’m looking forward to some more juicy “oops” moments.

Amusing bits like this will probably be the least of it:

Perry seemed pumped up after his enthusiastic, heckle-free reception at the Register’s Soapbox. When the Register’s moderator thanked him as he came off the stage, Perry said: “You’re welcome. I’m awesome!”

Limerick Ode To “Awesome” Rick Perry
By Madeleine Begun Kane

“You’re welcome. I’m awesome!” said Perry.
Oops, was Perry pumped up? I’d say, “Very!”
Seems another prez run
By that man will be fun.
No debate, Rick will help us make merry.

Horse’s Ass Of A Candidate (Limerick)

August 12th, 2014

This could very well be the silliest limerick I’ve ever written. But when the focal point of a political ad appears to be a horse with a huge penis, I can’t help myself. And if you don’t know what I’m referring to, you simply must take a gander at Gary Kiehne and his well-hung horse.

Horse’s Ass Of A Candidate (Limerick)
By Madeleine Begun Kane

There once was a horse who was mad
Cuz his penis was used in an ad.
“How dare you imply
I’m endorsing that guy!
Scratch my likeness. That candidate’s bad!”

Open Limerick To Rand Paul Poetry Critics

August 7th, 2014

The press is having a grand old time making fun of Rand Paul’s “bad limerick” about Mitch McConnell’s Democratic Party challenger, Alison Lundergan Grimes.

The problem is, Rand Paul’s verse isn’t close enough to limerick form to even qualify as a bad limerick. At best, it’s bad doggerel. Here’s what I’m talking about:

There once was a woman from Kentucky,
Who thought in politics she’d be lucky.
So she flew to L.A.
For a Hollywood bash,
She came home in a flash
With buckets of cash.

Sorry, but to call Rand Paul’s mishegas a “bad limerick” defames my beloved limerick form.

Open Limerick To Rand Paul Poetry Critics
By Madeleine Begun Kane

Rand Paul deserves plenty of blame
For his doggerel terribly lame.
Yes his Grimes verse is bad,
But the press makes me mad
When they call it a lim’rick. For shame!

While a limerick often does start
With “there once was a…” please have a heart.
There are rules to this form.
Five strict lines are the norm.
And to jump to conclusions ain’t smart.

It isn’t a lim’rick at all.
Those who call it a bad one, appall.
They have lim’ricks maligned,
And I really do mind.
Hence my three-verser limerick squall.

John Boehner’s Open Limerick To Obama

August 1st, 2014

John Boehner’s Open Limerick To Obama
By Madeleine Begun Kane

How dare you slow implementation
Of a law that is bad for our nation!
You’re impeding our rush
For a law that we’d flush.
Now show leadership! Fix immigration!

Double Dactyl For Eric Cantor

July 31st, 2014

Eric Cantor gave his House farewell address today. And that gives me all the excuse I need to post this non-limerick of mine, which I entered in the Style Invitational’s recent double dactyl contest:

Beaterdy Featerdy,
GOP Leader E.
Cantor’s unseated and
Out of a job.

Pundits are shocked by his
Unceremonious
Ouster by Brat of the
Tea Party mob.

If you’re not familiar with the double dactyl, I summarize their rules here.

And, by the way, I lost. You can find the winners’ list here.

Impeachment “Scam” (Limerick)

July 30th, 2014

Impeachment “Scam” (Limerick)
By Madeleine Begun Kane

John Boehner appears to be riled.
Dem impeachment talk’s driving him wild:
How dare Dems boost their brand
When impeachment ain’t planned
For that Oval defiler, reviled!

***

Yesterday, John Boehner called the impeachment notion a “scam” invented by Democrats to excite their base and raise money.

No doubt that will remain Boehner’s claim … right up to the moment the House starts the process to impeach.

Virtual Blog Tour: Welcome To My Mad World (Cross-Posted from my other Blog)

July 25th, 2014

A wonderful poet, Daniel Ari, honored me with his invitation to participate in the Virtual Blog Tour. And if you’re not familiar with Daniel’s poetry, you owe it to yourself to pay his blog and his blog tour post a visit. Actually … many visits.

Wait. Where are you going? I didn’t mean for you to visit him right this very minute. You have to at least pretend to read my post first.

Okay, now that I’ve recaptured your attention, I should probably explain the concept behind the Virtual Blog Tour. As best as I can figure out, it’s a method of introducing our readers to other bloggers we admire. Every participant answers the same quartet of questions about his/her writing process. And, in theory at least, we all gain some new readers.

So, on to Question 1: What am I working on?

In theory, I’m pulling together three different humor books: a limerick collection, a humor column collection, and a third book that’s so hard to describe, it’s unlikely to ever happen.

Aside from my books-in-progress, I write tons of limericks every week. Okay, maybe not tons, but A LOT! I also write light verse in other forms, even sneaking humor into haiku. (Of course when I write funny haiku, I get yelled at for not calling them senryu.)

Additionally, I spend a good chunk of time running a weekly limerick contest: Mad Kane’s Limerick-Offs. You can always find the current contest here and the most recent winners here. (Everyone’s welcome to participate both here on my blog and on my Facebook page.)

Question 2: How does my work differ from others of its genre?

Well, for one thing, it’s written by an oboist turned lawyer turned humor writer. And for another, I stretch the boundaries of limericks by writing them about every topic imaginable: marriage, politics, taxes, death, petty aggravations, serious problems, etc., in a tone which varies from bawdy to satirical to serious, to silly — frequently writing multi-verse limericks. And if I want to be extra hard on myself, I sometimes even attempt acrostic limericks.

By the way, although I post most of my limericks on this blog, I have a second blog reserved for political limericks. Why a separate Political Madness Blog? Because many readers who enjoy this blog, hate my politics. Separate blogs help limit the bloodshed.

Question 3: Why do I write what I do?

Like most writers, I write what I write because I have to. There was a period when I had to write humor columns. Next there was a period when I had to write a satirical George W. Bush diary and political song parodies. And right now I seem to be in my have-to-write-limericks period.

(There was also a 14 year period when I had to write legal briefs. But trust me, you don’t want to hear about that.)

Question 4: How does my writing process work?

I’m always writing limericks — often at inconvenient times, like while showering … or sleeping. Unfortunately I have an awful memory, and can’t trust myself to remember anything. So jotting down ideas immediately is key. Deciphering those notes? Another matter altogether.

While much of my limerick inspiration seems to arrive out of the blue, I’m always actively on the hunt for limerick ideas. I make a point of doing lots of daily news reading, headline scanning, and visiting “what’s trending now” on Twitter, Facebook, and sundry search engines.

I read several political sites a day in my quest for politicians to mock and political issues to have fun with. I also check out several sites specializing in oddball news items, as well as Salon, Slate, Huffington Post, and other possible sources of quirky news items that might inspire me. (Dave Barry’s blog is an unusually good source of such items.)

Limerick inspiration often comes from stories about silly lawsuits, oddball inventions, strange holidays, and weird trends.

Family members, especially my husband Mark, can be a constant source of humor inspiration. (Fortunately Mark enjoys being the subject of limericks and humor columns.)

If I’m really lucky, a limerick just comes to me whole cloth. When that happens, it’s just a matter of writing it down and doing a quick edit. But other limericks present more of a challenge, especially when it comes to news-oriented and political limericks, where I have to pack a lot of info into the limerick and still follow the rules and make readers laugh. (Speaking of rules, you can find my article on how to write limericks here.)

I often start with a single line — either the first line or the last. And in framing that line I usually try to end it with a word that has lots of rhymes. After all, the more rhyme word choices I have, the better the odds of my managing to polish off an amusing limerick.

What happens when I can’t make a limerick work? I add it to an ever-growing digital document jam-packed with hundreds of limericks (and partial limericks) I can’t bear to give up on. And often, months later, I manage to rescue some of them. On the other hand, many have been languishing in that file for years, taunting me to fix or delete the damn things.

I should probably mention some tools I find handy: Rhymezone, while far from perfect, can be very useful. The Syllable Dictionary is helpful as well. And then there’s the wonderful Memidex Dictionary which, among other things, has an excellent audio component. I can’t imagine how I ever survived without it.

*****

So that’s it for my answers to the Virtual Blog Tour questions. At this point, I’m supposed to recommend three other poet bloggers who promise to answer the same four questions. But alas, everyone I invited (1) had already participated in this tour; (2) didn’t feel they had the time to commit to the tour; or (3) didn’t feel they could persuade three other poet bloggers to participate.

However, if you’re still hungering to be introduced to other limerick writers, please do check out my weekly Limerick of the Week Posts. While, most of the weekly winners don’t blog, they’re a funny group of limerick writers you’re sure to enjoy.

(Cross-Posted from my other blog: Mad Kane’s Humor Blog)

Double Dactyl For Chris Christie

July 17th, 2014

Have you noticed the new wave of stories about Chris Christie’s upcoming Iowa visit? This renewed coverage of Christie’s presidential aspirations gives me an excuse to post this non-limerick of mine, which I entered in the Style Invitational’s recent double dactyl contest:

Bridgery Fridgery,
Governor Christie is
Stuck in a scandal and
Can’t bridge the gap.

Oval-aimed dieting,
Indefatigably,
Hoping to run as a
Skinnier chap.

If you’re not familiar with the double dactyl, I summarize their rules here.

And, by the way, I lost. You can find the winners’ list here.