By Ashley Lister

My friends call me Ash
I don’t have much cash
I write about writing
And about sex scenes that can prove positively exciting

As I may have mentioned before, I enjoy poetry exercises because I believe they help all of us with our writing:

  • Poetry is a wonderful way to warm up the writing muscles before starting any writing project.
  • Poetry gets the writer to focus on the strengths and merits of individual words in ways that aren’t usually considered with regular fiction writing.
  • Poetry can be a lot of fun.To that end, I thought we could look at one of my favourite pieces of fun poetry this month: the clerihew.

Edmund Clerihew Bentley
Say his name gently
He pioneered this verse form
Though critics say there could not be a worse form

The clerihew is a type of verse invented by Edmund Clerihew Bentley (1875-1956). Traditionally, the clerihew is a four-line poem made up of two rhyming couplets (aabb). The metre of the clerihew is intentionally, and often ridiculously, irregular. The purpose of the clerihew is to offer a satiric, absurd or whimsical biography of a character.

The Marquis de Sade
Liked his punishment hard
He was an aristocrat – first class
And he liked spanking servant girls on the ass

In the comments box below please feel free to write your own four-line clerihew introducing yourself or introducing one of the characters from your fiction.