ANTHONY HECHT—INVENTOR OF THE DOUBLE DACTYL. I posted here that I agree with Auden on the value of light verse. Anthony Hecht was, along with John Hollander, one of the inventors of the double dactyl form, which is more complicated than the sestina form. Double dactyls are usually light verse. This wikipedia article gives the rules and a number of examples. Here are the rules: “There must be two stanzas, each comprising three lines of dactylic dimeter followed by a line consisting of just a choriamb ( ¯ ˘ ˘ ¯ ). The two stanzas have to rhyme on their last lines. The first line of the first stanza is repetitive nonsense. The second line of the first stanza is the subject of the poem, a proper noun …. Note that this name must itself be double-dactylic. There is also a requirement for at least one line of the second stanza to be entirely one double dactyl word, for example “va-le-dic-tor-i-an”….
Here is an example by Hollander:
Was, and, as such,
Served between Clevelands, and
Save for this trivial
Didn’t do much.