"Chryses Vainly Soliciting the Return of Chryseis before the Tent of Agamemnon" by Jacopo Alessandro CalviFive Clerihews for the Iliad, by Raymond C. Roy The Society August 5, 2019 Poetry 9 Comments A Clerihew is a four-line comic poem with a rigid rhyming scheme, aabb, but no metric requirements. It stands in stark contrast to the strict metric requirements with no rhyming scheme in the Iliad. This poetic form was invented by E. C. (Edmund Clerihew) Bentley (1875-1956), British humorist and author. The first line of a Bentley’s Clerihew always contained the name of a famous person or character. The remaining three lines “roasted” the figure in a historical context. Helen of Troy Gave Paris great joy. But each kiss of her lips Launched even more Greek ships. King Agamemnon, In the uppity Greek echelon, With Achilles became snooty When he lost some booty. Telamonian Ajax, Shielding ships from attacks, Found a stone more effective Than hectoring invective. For Paris the unplucky It was better to be lucky. When aiming for the head He’d hit a foot instead. Pretty Patroclus, Was thrown under a bus, When the words to the song “Clothes make the man” were so wrong. Raymond C. Roy, M.D., Ph.D., is a Professor Emeritus (Anesthesiology) at the Wake Forest School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Most of his published poems have appeared in The Pharos and in Anesthesiology. He was introduced to Clerihews when he was given the delightful “The Lost Clerihews of Paul Ingram” last year by a colleague. Views expressed by individual poets and writers on this website and by commenters do not represent the views of the entire Society. The comments section on regular posts is meant to be a place for civil and fruitful discussion. Pseudonyms are discouraged. The individual poet or writer featured in a post has the ability to remove any or all comments by emailing submissions@ classicalpoets.org with the details and under the subject title “Remove Comment.” Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window) Related 9 Responses Sathyanarayana August 5, 2019 Hilarious! I saw movies and read a bit of Illiad. And well these are good. I learned one more form. Thank you. Reply Carole Mertz August 5, 2019 These clerihews were fun! Thank you, Mr. Roy. I especially liked the “hectoring” reference. Reply C.B. Anderson August 5, 2019 They didn’t raise a chuckle. Maybe that’s MY problem. In the fourth one, I think “heel” would have worked better than “foot.” Reply Raymond Roy August 7, 2019 Actually heel is not better. In the Iliad Paris wounds the Greek hero Diomedes with an arrow to his foot. The death of Achilles by an arrow from Paris (or Apollo disguised as Paris) to the heel of Achilles is not described in the Iliad. The Iliad ends with the death of Hector, not Achilles. Reply E. Cleridew Basu August 9, 2019 Mr. Roy is correct; here are the pertinent lines from Book 11: οὐδ᾽ ἄρα μιν ἅλιον βέλος ἔκφυγε χειρός, ταρσὸν δεξιτεροῖο ποδός: διὰ δ᾽ ἀμπερὲς ἰὸς ἐν γαίῃ κατέπηκτο: ὃ δὲ μάλα ἡδὺ γελάσσας ἐκ λόχου ἀμπήδησε καὶ εὐχόμενος ἔπος ηὔδα: “βέβληαι οὐδ᾽ ἅλιον βέλος ἔκφυγεν: ὡς ὄφελόν τοι νείατον ἐς κενεῶνα βαλὼν ἐκ θυμὸν ἑλέσθαι. οὕτω κεν καὶ Τρῶες ἀνέπνευσαν κακότητος, οἵ τέ σε πεφρίκασι λέονθ᾽ ὡς μηκάδες αἶγες.” Reply Gregory J Pomper August 14, 2019 These are clever. Would Mr. Roy have other perhaps to share? Reply Connie Green September 11, 2019 Such good fun, and informative. Thanks. Reply Katharine Bolt September 15, 2019 These are so clever – so fun to read! Reply steven taylor September 16, 2019 Wonderful perspective and views I received while reading your Clerihews! Bravo! Reply Leave a Reply Cancel Reply Your email address will not be published.CommentName* Email* Website Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Notify me of new posts by email. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.