Once again, I run the risk of offering a limerick contest, the 2nd Annual Lefse Limerick Contest that runs throughout the rest of the month of January until February 10, just before Valentine’s Day. Of course, the topic of all limericks is lefse and love! Email your lefse-love limericks to email@example.com.
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.
A Lefse-Love Limerick
For the 2nd Annual Lefse Limerick Contest, you must write a limerick about lefse and love. After all, Valentine’s Day is approaching! Here’s one I just made up, for example. I couldn’t resist being part of the fun.
There once was a woman named Joyce Who was faced with a difficult choice: Pick lefse or Bob And try not to sob ”Sorry, Bob, the lefse looks moist!”
Ok, your turn. Write a lefse-love limerick—including lefse and love is mandatory—and enter the contest. Keep it clean, remember! Check out this site on how to write a limerick. Do your very best with having eight beats in the first, second, and fifth lines with the last word in those lines rhyming. Then five beats in the third and fourth lines, with the last word in those lines having a different rhyme than the last word in the first, second, and fifth lines.
Send your lefse-love limerick or limericks to firstname.lastname@example.org. Submit as many lefse-love limericks as you want until midnight on February 10. Winners will be announced February 14. Oh, winners will receive:
- First place: all-walnut lefse rolling pin and stand—made by me!
- Second place: Keep On Rolling Holly & Brass Cozy—Red Trim.
- Third place: autographed copy of my latest Book: Final Rounds: On Love, Loss, Life, and Lefse.
- All limericks of note receive a 2022 Let’s Make Lefse! Calendar.