While anapests lack a specific and predictable rhythm, dactyls have a stable, recurring, ARRHYTHMIC property.
As the lines above make clear, dactyls (HLL) and spondees (HH) are about equally common in Greek epic.
It makes sense to me, especially because this poem is a sonnet, probably the most familiar form, in dactyls, an extremely unfamiliar meter.
AG Could you speak about the dactyl, a form you have worked on for many years?
As if to underscore the rift of this loss, the smooth melody of regular dactyls is replaced with a jarring composite of spondees, trochees, iambs, and dactyls, all of which break from the hymns and folk songs that Hardy drew upon.
If he builds his poem from description and question to demand and exclamation, she calls his tone back to question and description; if he insists on a vision, she denies even those remnants of sound that she offered; if he insists upon incantatory sound elements in the hopes of reconstituting her voice, she tears open his dactyls, his rhymes, and his folk song allusions.
Iambs and dactyls
, as vestiges of historical traditions of meter, enact their old battle within Crane's lines between purity (or constraint?
The Voice" must be that rare thing in English verse, a poem in dactyls
that is neither comical nor indebted--as are, say, the clackety nifty hexameters of Clough's long poems--to a burlesque of the classical tradition.
In the February Word Ways, Don Hauptman's article on double dactyls
inspired Fred Cookinham to put the rules for double dactyls
into a double dactyl
In terms of English accentual-syllabic prosody, every fourth line of "Milton" can be heard as two dactyls
and two trochees ("Milton, a name to resound for ages") or alternately, trochee, iamb, anapest, and iamb with a final unstressed syllable ("Rings to the roar of an angel onset").
The correspondence between the one long and two short syllables when diagrammed as "--u u "and the shape of the male genitalia had led medieval grammarians to associate dactyls
with male sexuality.
29) But perhaps what makes the poem appear disturbingly "smooth and cheerful" is not so much Tennyson's use of dactyls
, but rather the unwavering consistency of the rhythm.