8 Steps To Write A Limerick Poem: A Simple Guide

by Amy

A limerick is a form of humorous verse that follows a specific rhyme scheme and rhythm. It is often associated with light-hearted and whimsical themes, making it a popular choice for children’s poetry and comedic writing. Limericks are characterized by their five-line structure, with a distinctive AABBA rhyme scheme and a rhythm known as anapestic meter. In this article, we will explore the step-by-step process of writing a limerick poem, delve into its history and structure, and provide examples to illustrate the art of crafting limericks.

Understanding the Limerick Form

Before diving into the process of writing a limerick, let’s first understand its key components and structure:

1. Five-Line Structure: A limerick consists of five lines in total.
2. AABBA Rhyme Scheme: The rhyme scheme of a limerick is AABBA, where the first, second, and fifth lines rhyme with each other, and the third and fourth lines rhyme with each other but are shorter.
3. Anapestic Meter: Limericks are written in anapestic meter, which means that each line follows a specific pattern of two short syllables followed by a longer stressed syllable (da-da-DUM).

Step-by-Step Guide to Writing a Limerick

Now, let’s walk through the step-by-step process of crafting a limerick:

Step 1: Choose a Theme or Topic

The first step in writing a limerick is to choose a theme or topic. Limericks are often humorous or light-hearted, so consider ideas that lend themselves well to playful and witty language. Common themes include funny situations, quirky characters, or absurd scenarios.

Step 2: Establish the Rhyme Scheme

Once you have a theme in mind, establish the AABBA rhyme scheme that defines a limerick. Decide on the rhyming words for the first, second, and fifth lines, as well as for the shorter third and fourth lines. The rhyme scheme adds a musical and cohesive element to the poem.

Step 3: Create the First Line (A)

The first line of a limerick sets the tone and introduces the main idea or character. It should end with a word that rhymes with the endings of the second and fifth lines. Use this line to establish the rhythm and flow of the poem.

Step 4: Develop the Second Line (A)

The second line continues the narrative or description introduced in the first line. It also rhymes with the endings of the first and fifth lines, maintaining the AABBA rhyme scheme. Consider using descriptive language or wordplay to add depth to the limerick.

Step 5: Construct the Third Line (B)

The third line of a limerick is shorter than the first two lines and typically introduces a twist or surprise element. It should rhyme with the endings of the fourth line, creating a mini-rhyme within the overall rhyme scheme. This line often adds humor or an unexpected turn to the poem.

Step 6: Craft the Fourth Line (B)

The fourth line continues the narrative or joke presented in the third line. It should rhyme with the endings of the third line and maintain the rhythm of the limerick. This line is an opportunity to further develop the theme or add a humorous punchline.

Step 7: Conclude with the Fifth Line (A)

The fifth line of a limerick brings the poem to a close and reinforces the rhyme with the first and second lines. It may summarize the theme, provide a resolution, or deliver a final humorous twist. End the limerick with a strong and satisfying conclusion.

Step 8: Review and Revise

After completing the initial draft of your limerick, take time to review and revise it. Pay attention to the rhythm, rhyme scheme, and overall coherence of the poem. Make adjustments as needed to enhance clarity and comedic impact.

Examples of Limerick Poems

To illustrate the process of writing a limerick, here are some examples of well-known limerick poems:

Example 1:

There once was a man from Peru (A)

Who dreamt he was eating his shoe (A)

He awoke with a fright (B)

In the middle of the night (B)

To find that his dream had come true (A)

Example 2:

There was an old man with a beard (A)

Who said, “It is just as I feared (A)

Two owls and a hen (B)

Four larks and a wren (B)

Have all built their nests in my beard!” (A)

Example 3:

A fellow jumped into the pool (A)

And found himself looking a fool (A)

He forgot how to swim (B)

And his chances grew slim (B)

As he splashed and flailed like a tool (A)


Writing a limerick can be a delightful and creative endeavor. By following the step-by-step guide outlined above and drawing inspiration from examples, you can craft limerick poems that entertain and amuse readers with their witty language and playful rhythm. Experiment with different themes, rhymes, and twists to unleash your poetic flair and enjoy the art of limerick writing.


Does a limerick need a title?

In general, limericks do not require a title. The focus of a limerick is on the playful and witty content within the five-line structure, rather than a formal title. However, if you wish to provide context or highlight a theme, you can choose to include a title for your limerick.

Can you use the same word twice in a limerick?

While it is not a strict rule, it is generally discouraged to use the same word twice in a limerick, especially if it creates repetition that detracts from the humor or creativity of the poem. Limericks often rely on varied vocabulary and inventive language to maintain interest and comedic impact. However, occasional repetition of a word for emphasis or wordplay may be acceptable if used judiciously and effectively.

Related Articles


Discover the soulful universe of PoemsHubs, where words dance with emotions. Immerse yourself in a collection of evocative verses, diverse perspectives, and the beauty of poetic expression. Join us in celebrating the artistry of words and the emotions they unfold.

Copyright © 2023 poemshubs.com