How to Write a Funny Poem
Poetry is a valuable part of creative writing that allows you to express abstract feelings about a particular subject in a creative way. However, poetry does not just have to be serious, romantic or tragic. It can also be about interesting or humorous happenstances or thoughts that you have on a daily basis. Writing a funny poem can be an artistic pastime and a creative way to exercise your wit. Writing a funny poem is not much different than writing a serious poem, it just takes a little extra humor.
Brainstorm a topic for your poem. Ideally this is something that you are familiar with or have a fairly broad knowledge base about. Incorporate topics that frustrate you or cause you to laugh during the course of an average day. Topics that you know about are easier to write on than things you do not have much knowledge of. Making funny poetry requires one to draw upon their experiences or knowledge of something and turn it around into humor.
Outline Your Poem
Outline the length and scansion of your poem. Write the poem either in an established structure or free-form, especially if you’re not very skilled at writing poetry. Established poem makeup like a haiku has a concrete form in it's three lines of five syllables in the first, seven syllables in the second and five syllables in the last line. A limerick usually has seven, seven, five, five and seven syllables in its five lines. However, writing the poem in free-form verse is also an option that does not require any structure of lines, syllables or rhymes. Free-form poetry does not require rhymes for a poem, but they often make a poem more catchy and lyrical. Choosing from the different types of poems will give you more freedom when trying to make your poem funny.
Write down ideas for lines or couplets that rhyme or lines that portray the hilarity of your subject. This will help you brainstorm content to include in your poem. The writing process can be very mechanical, so writing down funny ideas as they come in this way will help you write a poem and deliver a punch line.
Finish Your Poem
Piece the lines together to form the humorous poem. The beginning of the poem should hook the reader to want to continue reading the rest of the poem. The ending line should leave the reader thinking about the poem. Ideally, the final line should be the most humorous line of the poem so that it causes the reader to think about what was said and dwell on why it was funny. Then go over the entire poem and make sure it is as you wish. It may not be the funniest piece of writing you’ve ever written, but keep trying and practicing after. Don’t be afraid to have people read your whole poem and give you writing tips after as well.
Victoria is a freshman at the University of Missouri-Columbia majoring in Journalism. She is a Walter Williams Scholar, Head of Marketing for Mizzou Student Media and a member of the premier jazz ensemble, Hitt St Harmony.