A. E. Housman’s Light Verse: ‘The Crocodile’

In this week’s Dispatches from The Secret Library, Dr Oliver Tearle enjoys the comic verse by one of the most ‘miserable’ poets in English literature

‘The Crocodile or, Public Decency’ is not one of the best-known poems of A. E. Housman (1859-1936), the classical scholar and poet who failed his Finals at Oxford but went on to become Professor of Latin at Cambridge (and to inspire the character of Inspector Morse, I might add).

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10 of the Best Comic Poems Everyone Should Read

By Dr Oliver Tearle (Loughborough University)

What are the funniest comic poems in the English language? What makes for a successfully humorous poem? The following post offers a selection of ten of the best and funniest comic poems in English literature, from the Middle Ages to the present day (or almost).

As we’ve confined ourselves to ten poems, we’ve tended to focus on English (or British) poetry, and so have left out a few notable writers of light verse, such as Ogden Nash. Perhaps a follow-up post will have to atone for this, but in the meantime, we hope you enjoy these celebrated comic poems.

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