A pea-green boat, a runcible spoon & a lot of nonsense¬†#EdwardLear #poetry #limericks #London #May #nonsense #morals

Poet, Edward Lear, was born in London of Danish ancestry on 12th May, 1812. 
His ‘Book of Nonsense’ was published anonymously in 1846 and holds his most famous poem ‘The Owl & The Pussy-cat’ as well as over 100 limericks.

From the age of six he suffered from epilepsy and asthma. Despite being a sufferer he was still able to write creatively with a unique humour and to decorate his rhymes with fanciful illustrations.

His favourite nonsense word which was his own ‘sweet’ (‘they took some honey and plenty of money’) creation was ‘runcible spoon’ from ‘The Owl & The Pussy-cat.’  The word runcible appeared many times in his writing, defining different objects.

runcible cat’ 

runcible hat’

runcible goose’

As I tap away, scribing this tidy little blog, my iPad already dislikes the word, runcible, stating firmly ‘No replacement found.’ 

Moral 1: don’t let computers say to you, ‘wrong word, stupid.’ How are we to produce anything new, weird and beyond the ordinary?

Moral 2: don’t let being a sufferer stop you from branching out beyond the ordinary and making something work for you.

Since the 1920s dictionaries have come to define the term ‘runcible spoon’ as a fork-like utensil with two broad prongs and one sharp curved prong. 

A grapefruit spoon? A pickles or hors d’oeuvres spoon? Whatever your social habits, Edward Lear created spectacular vernacular.

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Sandcastles and Sundowners

Time to take the train down to the seashore (whatever your age) put on a sun hat, some sun screen and enjoy the summer! 

There are rock pools with fishes and barnacles; golden grains to turn into sandcastles; picnics with ice creams, candy floss and donuts; you can paddle up to your ankles; low tide for shell seekers and high tide for surf boarders; screechy seagulls; plenty of sand to get into sandwiches (the word sand is there already!). Live out an Enid Blyton book with lashings of lemonade and ginger beer.

Everyone can mix and mingle happily on the beach,

‘The Owl and The Pussy-cat went to sea

In a beautiful pea-green boat…’ (Edward Lear, 19th century)

Let your imagination flow, live a little nonsense like Victorian poet Edward Lear, then go home ‘dance to the light of the moon’ and be serious for the rest of the week…thinking fondly of the fun you can have beside the sea with time and rhyme!