Starting with one syllable for Line 1, each line then adds a syllable until the fifth line – which has 10 syllables. To rhyme, or not to rhyme – you can choose.
Line 1 – 1 syllable
Line 2 – 2 syllables
Line 3 – 3 syllables
Line 4 – 4 syllables
Line 5 – 10 syllables
Grit teeth, strike pose.
Bent double, in trouble. Can’t touch my toes!
© Kathryn Apel
That’s the challenge! Write a tetractys.
A double tetractys is when you turn a second, related poem on its end, to make a diamond shape.
Weigh your words and construct your poem. It’s not just about getting your syllable counts right on each line. Line breaks are important too – so make them work for you.
Ramp up the challenge with a homophone, homograph or homonym double tetractys.