March 21, 2005


A dactyl is a foot of poetry (ON-off-off). A double-dactyl is two of them in a row. It is also a specific kind of poem that employs some pretty rigid rules. It has to have two stanzas, a proper noun that is a double-dactyl, a six-syllable word that is a double-dactyl, you get the picture. Here are the rules, in a self-referential poem:

Long-short-short, long-short-short
Dactyls in dimeter,
Verse form with choriambs
(Masculine rhyme):

One sentence (two stanzas)
Challenges poets who
Don't have the time.

Heaps more at Alex Chaffee's Double Dactyl page.