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Monday, February 29, 2016

A punctured achilles, one foot short of heroic ...

So I've recently been experimenting with dactylic hexameter (otherwise known as 'heroic hexameter' or the 'meter of epic poetry'), which as far as my nascent understanding is concerned is structured something like this:

— U | — U | — U | — U | — u u | — X

With the key to the above representation being as follows: — reads as a long syllable, U as either a long or a short syllable, u is a short syllable, and X signifies the anceps, which can again be either long or short. In English, 'long' or 'short' is more commonly interpreted as 'long' = a stressed syllable, 'short' = an unstressed one; a crucial technicality if the main subject of this post is to be rendered into anything meaningful.

Anyway, after spending several weeks of trying to write in this meter, the Baader-Meinhof Phenomenon suddenly resulted in my noticing another layer to the description of Tuesday night's upcoming dinner that was written on the side of our fridge ...


Or, shown more graphically: 

Tues/day:/ I/ta/li/an/ Meat/balls,/ Spa/ghet/ti/ and/ Vege 

Also of note is that the main caesura (the comma that's found after the second syllable in third foot) and the Hermann's Bridge (in the fourth foot) are both present and, as far as I understand, correct. 

Of course, the ending is less than perfect due to the line being completed at the start of the fifth foot, although this is something that the title and its drawing of a long bow (in the sense that some imagination is required to have writer's intent = illustrated point, but yes, ⸮ too) has attempted to remedy by way of strangled allusion. 

Actually, the fact of it reading 'vege' instead of 'veges' was something of a plus really, for should the meal have actually had six otherwise perfectly correct feet it may very well've finished me off, for having just completed Mark Dunn's Ella Minnow Pea, the temptation to secrete an additional 's' onto the end of the word - perhaps even going so far as to have my wife continue it in her own handwriting; the way the last 'e' is sort of crushed up next to the 'g' is a little suggestive of it being incomplete - was never really a possibility, despite it appearing to've at least crossed my mind ...