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Competition

Double dactylic

2 December 2017

9:00 AM

2 December 2017

9:00 AM

In Competition No. 3026 you were invited to submit topical double dactyls.
 
The double dactyl was dreamed up in 1951 by the poet Anthony Hecht and the classical scholar Paul Pascal. My well-thumbed copy of Jiggery-Pokery, a wonderful 1967 compendium of the form edited by Hecht and the poet John Hollander, reveals with pride that Auden (to whom the book is dedicated) used the form ‘thrice’ for the choruses in his Aesopian playlets Moralities.
 
Double dactyls always go down well, and this comp elicited an entertaining parade of double dactylic notables — and pursuits egomaniacal, unoligarchical, prosecutorial, heterosexual, philoprogenitive…
 
The winners earn £15 each.

Foggily-froggily
Michel B. Barnier,
Consummate bureaucrat,
Raises the price,
 
Crushing the will of our
Flummoxed and browbeaten
Plenipotentiaries
Held in his vice.
Hugh King
 
Higgledy piggledy
Pastuso Paddington
gets himself banged up in
Pentonville gaol.
 
Even the lairiest
anarctophiliac
joins in the whip-round for
Paddington’s bail.
Nick MacKinnon
 
Mopily-ropily,
Manchester’s Morrissey
Goes back to crooning, his
Novel a fail.
 
Hoping his audience,
Hari-kiristically,
Still want to hear a man
Tunelessly wail.
Adrian Fry
 
Biffety-boffety
Anthony Joshua
Heavyweight champion
Top of the pile;
 
Talks of his legacy
Hyperbolistically;
Nemesis listens and
Smiles a slow smile.
W.J. Webster
 
Doubly-Dactylly
Benedict Cumberbatch,
Won’t you indulge in a
Three-in-bed romp?
 
While you’re behaving so
Uncontroversially
I have got nothing to
Mock in this comp.
George Simmers
 
Yummily, mummily,
Catherine Middleton’s
Pregnant again to the
Rapture of Wills.
 
I’d be as lavishly
Philoprogenitive
If I could stretch to the
Nursery bills.
Rob Stuart
 
Hoitety-Toitety
Emily Thornberry,
Feminist lawyer and
Labour MP,
 
Speaks with a manner quite
Aristocratical
Save when men style her as
Lady Nugee.
Joseph Conlon
 
Taxily, maxily,
Franklin D. Roosevelt
Gave the inheritance
Levy a hitch.
 
Trump says ‘Repeal it! Our
Agroindustrial
Future depends on my
Kids staying rich!’
Rob Hirst
 
Limberly, Kimberly,
Khloé Kardashian,
Kourtney, and Robbie seem
Destined for Fame’s
 
Roster, since they all have
(Double-dactylically
Speaking) stupendously
Talented names.
Frank Osen
 
Higgledy piggledy,
Ludwig van Beethoven,
if he could glimpse what our
world has become,
 
likely would find a new
applicability
for his immortal phrase:
dum dum dum DUM!
Robert Schechter
 
Nobody-joebody
George Papadopoulos,
‘Fetcher of coffee’ the
Trumpists have said,
 
Incontrovertibly
Met with the Russians, so
Maybe Trump sent him for
Vodka instead.
Max Gutmann

 

No. 3029: best foot forward

 
You are invited to provide a new year’s resolution (or more than one, if you like) in verse. Please email entries of up to 16 lines to lucy@spectator.co.uk by midday on 27 December.


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