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Tuesday, February 5, 2013


Octameter, created by Shelley A. Cephas, 
is a poem made up of 16 lines
divided into two stanzas of 8 lines each.
Each line has a syllable count of 5.
The set rhyme scheme is: a/b/c/d/e/d/f/d  g/h/c/g/i/g/d/d.

I found this form defined on Shadow Poetry.
Of all the poetry forms I have studied none has been affixed with a more misleading and potentially confusing name.

Example Poem

T-aint Octameter  (Octameter)

Most mis-named form seen--
the Octameter.
That's a standard line
length measured in feet.
I ambs, trochees, such
which decide the beat.
Confusing girth with
length was not too neat.

It's an octastitch.
Can't quarrel at all.
If this form were mine
There'd be a name switch.
Say.. an octapent;
gone the need to bitch.
Current name is scat,
Cephas should fix that.

© Februrary 5, 2013

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  1. It would be helpful to distinguish, in the rhyme scheme, lines that rhyme with others from lines that do not rhyme at all. For instance:
    a/b/C/D/e/D/f/D G/h/C/G/i/G/D/D
    or more traditionally
    x/x/c/d/x/d/x/d g/x/c/g/x/g/d/d

  2. Thanks for your comment. I considered the x/x protocol option, but in my mind x/x/a/b implies that the first two lines need not rhyme with any other, BUT may, whereas the protocol chosen denies the possibility of any rhyme, removing it from the poet's option.

    Note also. if the x option were invoked, it should be
    x/x/a/b...etc not x/x/c/d...