10-line Poem Challenge #16: Double Five

Please take a few minutes to read this delightful Decannelle from Word Florilegium and Angela Rueger’s “Sunshine on My Shoulders” (with apologies to John Denver)….

When you have finished reading the poems linked above, be sure to come back here to learn about a new decastich, the Double Five.

The Double Five is referenced in Sol’s Magazine, though I am unsure of the creator.

Information about this form is very sketchy, described merely as “Two stanzas of exactly five short lines each, titled, written as a portrait, usually of a loved one.” How short are the lines? Is there rhythm? meter? rhyme? I’m going to say, go with your gut.

Here is the summary:

  • It is a decastitch written in two stanzas of 5 lines each (quintets).
  • The lines are short (how short?).
  • The poem has a title.
  • The theme is portrait, usually of a loved one.
  • Nothing specific is stated regarding rhythm, meter, or rhyme.


Below are two samples for you. Since rhyme was not specified, I decided against it for these two samples. Rhyme wouldn’t hurt, but I decided to use parallelism and repetition rather than rhyme. In the first one, “Hubby,” I address my husband in a reflection on our wedding day. In the second one, “Dad,” I write in the third person about what my dad meant to me as a young child and later as an adult. You can’t say much in 10 short lines, so you have to make them count. The Double Five is actually a little more challenging than it seems on the surface, simply by nature of its brevity.


My other half
“To love and to cherish”
When you gave me your name
And sealed it with a kiss
You completed me

My partner
“For better or for worse”
When I gave you my word
And sealed it with a kiss
I completed you

Copyright © 2018 Abigail Gronway – All Rights Reserved



You looked so big
In your little girl’s eyes
My hero
My protector
I was so proud of you

You’re gone now
And I am older
But I carry you in my heart
And you are still
My hero

Copyright © 2018 Abigail Gronway – All Rights Reserved


It’s Your Turn!

Now it’s time for you to write a Double Five. Here are a few suggestions to get you started:

  1. Choose a loved one for whom you wish to write a poem.
  2. Decide on voice. In other words, will you write to them (second person) or about them (third person)?
  3. If possible, divide your thoughts into two parts.
  4. Then express each thought in five short lines, with or without rhyme and meter.
  5. And of course, when you are finished, share your poem with the rest of us.

Don’t know how? Follow these simple steps…

  1. Write your blog post.
  2. Include the tag Decastich Challenge or 10LPC
  3. Include a pingback/link to this post in your post so I can find you.
  4. Publish your post.

Dig Deeper

To find more samples and to learn from those who taught me, check out these sites. All links open in a separate tab so you can easily find your way back here.

Poet’s Collective ~ The forms on this website are not organized in alphabetical order, but he does have at least one sample poem for each form, he even has tags for rhyme scheme. He also has a visual template for every form so you can see the rhyme scheme and stress patterns, as applicable. That is extremely helpful.

Sol Magazine ~ This resource covers much more than just 10-line poems.

“Metric Forms from Pathways for the Poet” ~ This is an outline of information from Pathways for the Poet by Viola Berg (1977), a book for and by educators. This resource also includes more than just 10-line poems, but it helped to fill in the gaps where my other sources were a bit scanty with their information.

Shadow Poetry ~ This is my favorite resource for learning about poetic forms (and not just the decastich), but I have discovered that there is ever so much more to learn than what I can find here. This is, however, a very good place to start.


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