Tag Archives: limericks

Session #14 September 30th: Poetry

UPDATE: Thanks to all of you for attending today. I was pleasantly surprised to see so many of you there, even the person who said they don’t like poetry!

I would be interested to read your comments about today’s session.

Today we read Happiness and Buckingham Palace by A.A. Milne (author of “Winnie The Pooh“), with illustrations by Ernest Shephard, The Owl and the Pussycat by Edward Lear, a limerick by Edward Lear, and some free verse by Edwin Morgan (“The Loch Ness Monster’s Song” (click on the link to hear a real Scotsman reading the poem aloud!), “Siesta of a Hungarian Snake”, “Spacepoem 3: Off Course (includes a link to an audio)”, and “Chinese Cat”).

Edward Lear was a contemporary of Alice in Wonderland author Lewis Carroll. Carroll also wrote nonsense verse. The Jabberwocky is perhaps the most famous example (from Alice Through the Looking Glass). On YouTube I found these 2 videos of the poem being read aloud: this one is an animation of Lewis Carroll “reading” his poem (it’s not his voice, of course); this one is a collection of illustrations by different artists of the Jabberwock, while a woman reads the poem aloud.

The wonders of the Internet! Here is a video of someone who has put The Owl and the Pussycat to music and sings his song himself; here is a home-made animation of the poem; here is another version by janeczka (sounds like a Czech name); here is another version with an illustration by Lear himself. The poem itself was written in 1871! More than 130 years ago, and yet it is still so popular.

Some other “nonsense verse” by Lear: The Jumblies, The Quangle Wangle’s Hat, The Akond of Swat; The Pobble who has no toes.

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Today, we are going to read some English poetry, starting with some children’s and humorous verse. Then we will read some sonnets. Did you look up the words listed in the Poetry worksheet? You still have some time before the session!

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