PoetryBase/Poetry Gnosis Home   Mission Statement   Frequently Asked Questions   Poetic Forms Listing   Poetic Tips Listing   The Gnostic Poet's Discourses   Poetry-Related Reviews   Letters to a Young Writer   Site Change Log

Double Dactyl


Structure, Metrical Requirement, Rhyme Scheme Requirement, Other Requirement


This form is much like the clerihew with more structure. It is said to be developed by Anthony Hecht and Paul Pascal, and used extensively by John Hollander. The rules are:

  1. The poem is two quatrains of dactylic dimeter.
  2. The last two unstressed syllables of the fourth lines are not present.
  3. The last lines of the two quatrains rhyme.
  4. The first line is dactylic nonsense, such as "higgledy-piggledy" or "pocketa-pocketa" or "hickory-dickory."
  5. The second line is a dactylic dimeter proper name.
  6. At least one line will be a six-syllable double-dactyllic word. (Not an absolute requirement.)
  7. The general contents are light verse.

Attributed to: 

Anthony Hecht and Paul Pascal



Rhythm/Stanza Length: 


Line/Poem Length: 


See Also:  

Accentual-Syllabic Verse, Clerihew, Dactyl, Light Verse, Limerick




To contact us, e-mail thegnosticpoet@poetrybase.info.
Copyright 2001-2015 by Charles L. Weatherford. All rights reserved.