Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Tuesday Poem: "Five Clerihews"

Marilyn Monroe
had fame not fun though.
She took some pills, they couldn’t wake her.
Perhaps she should have stayed Norma Jean Baker.

James Dean
was suave and cut clean,
but when they pulled him from the car
I bet his looks weren’t movie star.

Saint Joan of Arc
lit the spark
which fired a nationalist feud.
The French canonised her, the English barbequed.

Marlon Brando
stayed his hand though
Cheyenne was badly beaten.
It took the gun of his son, Christian but Tahitian.

Madonna Louise Ciccone
has proved herself quite a show pony.
She mixed Marilyn’s image with coney tits
and made a squillion from her hits.

Something a bit light-hearted this week. According to that fount of all online knowledge, Wikipedia, "a clerihew is a whimsical, four-line biographical poem invented by Edmund Clerihew Bentley."

Also, according to Wikipedia, "a clerihew has the following properties:

  • It is biographical and usually whimsical, showing the subject from an unusual point of view; it pokes fun at mostly famous people
  • It has four lines of irregular length and metre (for comic effect)
  • The rhyme structure is AABB; the subject matter and wording are often humorously contrived in order to achieve a rhyme, including the use of phrases in Latin, French and other non-English Languages[2]
  • The first line contains, and may consist solely of, the subject's name."

If you wish to delve further into this poetic form, here is the link:


The poet wishes to acknowledge Valley Micropress in whose pages some of these clerihews originally appeared.


  1. I haven't seen or heard the word "clerihew" since my college days -- well back in the previous millenium!

    These are great fun -- thanks!

  2. Love the Madonna clerihew - what a laugh! I wasn't familiar with this form, so thanks, Andrew!!