Edward LearWas haunted by the fearWhile traveling in AlbaniaOf contracting kleptomania.-o-Louis PasteurSo his colleagues aver,Lived on excellent termsWith most of his germs.-o-No one could ever inveigleGeorg Wilhelm Friedrich HegelInto offering the slightest apologyFor his Phenomenology.-o-When the young KantWas told to kiss his aunt,He obeyed the Categorical Must,But only just.-o-Charles DickensCould find nothing to say to chickens,But gossiping with rabbitsBecame one of his habits.
W. H. Auden's series of clerihews appears first in Homage to Clio, but then with illustrations by Filippo Sanjust in Academic Graffiti. That's Sanjust's drawing above of Dickens/with rabbits and chickens. The chickens look rather offended to me.
The clerihew form was invented by E. C. (Edmund Clerihew) Bentley (1875-1956), also author of the mystery series featuring Philip Trent, the first of which is Trent's Last Case. (The last shall be first?) Since we're here...I can't resist quoting my favorite Clerihew clerihew:
George the ThirdOught never to have occurred.One can only wonderAt so grotesque a blunder.
And, oh heck, it's catching...
Edmund Clerihew Bentleyacted most irreverently,like he was one of the playahswith Dorothy L. Sayahs.