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  • Clerihew
  • Four lines, two rhyming couplets. The first line is the name of a person. The rhymes and the line lengths are allowed to be - supposed to be, even - a bit rubbish.
  • Golden shovels
  • A golden shovel takes another poet's poem (or extract) and uses its words as the end words of the lines of a new poem. So if you read down the right-hand side, just the last word of each line, of the golden shovel, you will be reading the poem that inspired it. The golden shovel expands, develops or even changes the meaning of the original.
  • Haiku
  • First: five syllables Next line: seven syllables Last: five syllablesThere are some other rules too, but I'm ignoring them.
  • Limericks
  • Five-line poems, usually funny or light-hearted; the first, second and fifth lines rhyme with each other; the third and fourth lines also rhyme with each other, and are shorter.
  • Pantoums
  • A form of poetry comprised of a series of quatrains; the second and fourth lines of each stanza being repeated as the first and third of the next, until the last stanza, where the second and fourth lines are the third and first lines of the first stanza. Got that? Good.
  • Sonnets
  • Fourteen lines of iambic pentameter. The two most usual rhyme schemes are ababcdcd-efefgg (English/Shakespearean) and abbaabba-cdecde or abbaabba-cdcdcd (Italian/Petrarchan). The move from the first eight lines (the octave) to the remaining six lines (the sestet) often sees a turn in the poem's theme or 'argument'. Plus some fourteen-liners that are not strictly sonnets.
  • Triolet
  • Eight lines. The first and second lines repeat as the seventh and last lines, and the first line also repeats as the fourth line. The rhyme scheme is  ABaAabAB, capital letters representing the repeated lines.

An Ode to Jeremy Hunt

The Health Secretary’s named Jeremy Hunt He sits on the benches at front It would, inter alia, Insult female genitalia To call him a vile Tory cunt

West Coast Franchising Chaos

In 2012, the awarding of the franchise for the West Coast railway route descended into chaos, when the government gave the job to FirstGroup in preference to Virgin, then admitted irregularities and started all over again. Two limericks: 1. A … Read more

An Ode to Tube Cleaning

A right filthy job is Tube cleaning We slave while the bosses are preening We work night and day No pension or sick pay And the wages are truly demeaning But cleaners won’t let them attack us Harass us, track … Read more

Gideon’s Budget 2012

Two limericks for Gideon George Osborne’s 2012 Budget: 1. We can be sure that in Gideon’s budget However the media judge it There’ll be gifts for the rich For the rest, not a stitch And Labour’s poor leaders will fudge … Read more

Mrs Wales Is Having A Baby

There once was a princess called Kate Who noticed her period was late Each time she vomited The media commented And worshipped the future head of state