At considerable risk, I run the first ever Lefse Limerick Contest throughout the rest of the month of April.
Let’s get right to the risk. Wikipedia defines a limerick as “a form of verse, usually humorous and frequently rude,” in five-lines. The first, second, and fifth lines rhyme, and the third and fourth lines, which are shorter, have a different rhyme.
The form originated in England in the 18th century and became popular in the 19th century. Wikipedia says, “Gershon Legman, who compiled the largest and most scholarly anthology, held that the true limerick as a folk form is always obscene … . From a folkloric point of view, the form is essentially transgressive; violation of taboo is part of its function.”
Wikipedia cites the following example is a limerick of unknown origin:
The limerick packs laughs anatomical
Into space that is quite economical.
But the good ones I’ve seen
So seldom are clean
And the clean ones so seldom are comical.
A Clean Lefse Limerick
So you see the risk of running a Lefse Limerick Contest. To be true to form, a lefse limerick, it appears, should be “obscene” and “frequently rude” and a “violation of taboo.” Oh, dear!
Well, following the exact form of a limerick will never do in here Lefse Land. We have our fun with lefse and certainly lutefisk, but we are never rude or obscene. No, no, no!
And yet, it is possible to dance along the borders of the true limerick to create an entertaining lefse limerick. Check this out:
There once was a Norsky named Niles
He endured a rough month with the piles
He ate lefse — was cured!
So please rest assured
On those who love lefse, God smiles.
There, that wasn’t so bad! I dance along the border of the true limerick with mention of “piles” in the second line, but I never cross the line. You must admit, the limerick could have gone decidedly south after that. But it didn’t, and we end up with smiles.
Ok, your turn. Write a lefse limerick—including lefse is a must—and enter the contest. Keep it clean, remember! Check out this site on how to write a limerick.
Send your lefse limerick or limericks to email@example.com before the first of May. The winner of the Lefse Limerick Contest wins the above Best Handle Ever Lefse Stick-Walnut Handle.
Second place winner gets Keep On Rollin’: A Lefse Song for Voice and Piano
Third place gets the ultimate in comfort when on your feet rolling lefse: Burlix Graduated Compression Socks—Black.
Again, send your lefse limericks to firstname.lastname@example.org before May 1, 2021. Good luck!