Before we go any further, “A Night of Pure Pleasure” has nothing to do with sex whatsoever, so if that’s what you expected, sorry to disappoint.
I refer in fact to a night some years back now, when I found an on-line poetry competition on the Guardian website, quite by chance.
There was an article by someone (sorry, I forgot the name, but I think it was Simon ——-), and underneath in the comments section there was a host of Limericks.
Now, as I was teaching at the time, and Poetry was one of my subjects, I was interested, of course. In addition to that, the Limerick is one of my favourite verse forms, so wild horses were not going to drag me away from the computer!
I watched and I waited.
I needed to see where the flow was going before I made a move. There was large number of contributors on-line, so new posts were coming thick and fast. When I coupled the posts to the names of the people posting, I could get an idea of how fast they were composing new Limericks, and I thought “Ouch”, this is serious stuff – I wonder if I can keep up?
I bided my time, then jumped in, posted one of my standard verses, and waited for a reaction. It wasn’t a repeat of any previous post, I had already checked them all.
The reaction wasn’t long in coming. A new name had appeared in the list – mine – and people started to respond to it.
Now we were at the make or break stage. I needed to compose a new Limerick “on the fly” as it were, and post it in response to the others. A couple of minutes of furious thought, and I had it. Type it in quickly, and send it on its way. I was in!
To my amazement and delight, the Limericks kept coming. Page after page of comments scrolled by, with 50 or so Limericks to a page. And my Muse was in top form – I was keeping pace with the best of them.
Gradually the numbers started to dwindle, as people who had to go about their lives signed off and left the group. In the end, there were just two of us left, and a moderator, and the other guy, who came from somewhere in South America, I think, was really good!
We continued our conversation in verse for a while, but unfortunately the moderator had run out of steam, and suggested that we close down. I protested, (in verse, of course), and suggested that he could sleep if he liked, while we carried on.
But then, my South American partner also sent a Limerick to the effect that he too would have to close down.
Sadly, the fun was over.
By this time, dawn was breaking!
Reluctantly, I said my goodbyes, and shut down the computer.