Definitely Limericks by Rory Ewins


The start of the alphabet, a,
Can rhyme with its next letter, b,
If pronouncing them, maybe,
As if you’re a baby:
With schwa sounds, the kind heard in huh.

In Britain, “the top of the pops”
Means a song that you’ll see in the shops
From London to Tayside—
The number one A-side
Of singles that haven’t been flops.

Playing records, the part I loved most
Was to flip ’em and sample the host
Of odd B-sides thereon.
Will those days soon be gone,
Now that seven-inch singles are toast?

In the pub quiz, each answer I’d utter,
The quizmaster “uh-uh” would mutter.
“So it’s hot, and it’s slow...
It’s a sauna-bath... No?”
“It’s lava.” “Oh, a‘a,” I splutter.

The Hawaiian name for lava flows with a rough, jagged surface.

The aardvark explores after dark
Every inch of this African park
With his tongue and his claws
For those termites he gnaws
So he won’t end up starving, and cark.

Frau Aardvark once tried, for a lark,
To de-trouser her spouse in the dark.
As she snuffled about
In his pants with her snout,
She cried, “Vot you got ’ere? It’s ’ard... vark!

The dog and the wolf have both starred
In movies and books of regard,
And even a civet
Or hyena will rivet;
But aardwolves are doing it ’ard.

An abada stabbed at a crab
With its fabulous horn, but a grab
From a claw at its nose
Made the rhino suppose
That the forecast for dining was drab.

An obsolete name for the rhinoceros, stressed on the first syllable.

America’s feeling elation
At Bush hanging onto his station—
Apart from those few
Casting votes for the blue,
Who are fearing abalienation.

A piece to mark post-election day 2004, using an obsolete word for “alienation”.

Those Americans think ABC
Is American; Aussies like me
Know this broadcaster airs
Its shows here, but who cares,
Just as long as there’s stuff on TV.

In the USA, ABC stands for the advertising-funded American Broadcasting Company, launched as a radio and then television network in the 1940s. It was owned by Paramount for many years; today it is a Disney company. In Australia, the ABC is the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, the national broadcaster funded by the federal government. Founded as the Australian Broadcasting Commission in 1932, effectively replacing the privately run Australian Broadcasting Company, “Auntie” has broadcast commercial-free radio programmes since its inception and television since 1956. Its distinctive logo is based on a Lissajous curve.

Ooohhhhhh Aberdeen, finest city of granite,
With a number of thoroughfares which span it,
And some bridges, they say,
Quite like the one o’er the Tay
Near by Dundee, fairest toun on the planet.

In memory of William Topaz McGonagall (1825-1902), poet.

I don’t care what you say, Dad, okay?
I am not going outside to play.
Sure, I like playing games
With Jemima and James,
But abide by your ruling? No way!

If you’re tired of dressing up formally,
Consider behaving abnormally:
Cover up in a sheet,
And wear clogs on your feet,
And groan like a ghost, paranormally.

When it came time for Nature to form us,
She gave us no fur that might warm us—
Though some are too hairy
(Like werewolves—quite scary).
Did she err, or prefer the abnormous?

An old word for “abnormal”.

A yeti once wanted a brother,
So asked his abominable mother
To honour her name
And behave with no shame.
The final result? Yeti ’nother.

“Your brother’s a hell of a skite!
He can sing his own praises all night.
Says his fame is widespread
For his record in bed.”
“Oh, he does, does he? Sounds about right.”

An abridger takes so much away
That you lose any sense of the play
Of the words and [removed]
And yet nothing’s improved—
You can guess what the author would say.

Said a man to the reverend, “So,
Your mate Jesus... like, how can you know?
Don’t you find it quite odd,
This assumption he’s God?”
All he said, with abruptness, was: “No.”

“Agent 007, I’m fond
Of the way you attempt to abscond.
Tell me, when’s your next try?”
“Mister Blofeld, a spy
Never hides—as my word is my bond.”

If half of the voters, like you,
Vote for red, and a half plus one blue,
You may not think it right
That the blue win the night,
But an absolute majority do.

A virgin could not acquiesce
When his girlfriend began to undress.
“Please stop it!” he cried,
To which she replied,
“I abhor your abstemiousness.”

A gallery patron’s distractedness
Can tell us about her impactedness:
How the art makes her feel,
And whether it’s real,
Or whether there’s too much abstractedness.

Our lecturer blamed the abstruseness
Of the book on its patent diffuseness.
But I’m onto his game—
And the author, the same:
I suspect it was just their obtuseness.

Abudefduf is not some mistake
That a kid on a keyboard would make
When he randomly hits
Any key with his mitts;
It’s a damsel-fish—no, it’s not fake.

Abudefduf is a genus of tropical fish in the damsel-fish family, known generally as the sergeant-majors. There are approximately twenty species worldwide; one of them, Abudefduf saxatilis of the West Indies and the nearby U.S. coast, has the common name of cow-pilot, which sounds like an homage to Gary Larson.

“It’s ‘more than sufficient’, my dear,”
Said my aunt, “and it’s ‘ample’, I hear.
Defining abundant
Is never redundant;
I’ve made that abundantly clear.”

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