Biblical Limericks by D.R. Benson

Copyright 1986
Checked out 7 times in 24 years
Last checked out 12 years ago

Subtitled: Old Testament Stories Re-Versed. Who can resist having a little fun with the Bible? Not D.R. Benson, who has written more science fiction (the forward is by Isaac Asimov) than books of either humor or religion. And who doesn’t enjoy limericks? These aren’t great limericks (the rhymes are much too strained at times), so you’re as likely to groan as to chuckle, but that’s the nature of limericks anyway. They attempt to aim for both a chuckle and a groan. I also can’t help but admire Mr. Benson’s ambition in setting himself this task, which resulted in 69 limericks. I present “Out of Egypt” as a sample:

The problem of crossing the sea
Troubled Moses less than it would me;
Neither aircraft nor ship
Was required for the trip,
Which he booked through the best Agency.
                               Exodus 14:15-22

As above, the poet always notes the passage of the Bible he’s using for the limerick. Fifteen woodcuts by Albrecht Durer are scattered throughout the limericks, oddly giving the book both some class and additional humor. I call this book a keeper because of the religious theme, which is appropriate for the community (so long as it doesn’t take itself too seriously) and because I think it’s good to have some humor represented in a library’s collection. I believe I spotted an Ogden Nash or two on the shelves as well, so I’ve got more light verse ahead of me.


About jppoetryreader

Poetry reviewer and poetry consultant for libraries
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