If you look closely at the subtitle (epigraph) for this blog (up at the top in the title bar), you'll note that it is a poem of the form:
As the exampe suggests, the basic style is called a Fourteener (this is a link to the Wikipedia article). It has a meter scheme called Iambic Heptameter--two lines of seven stressed syllables each, thus fourteen stressed syllables in all. I call the two lines together a couplet because the cohesion is provided by two rhyming words at the end of the two lines (Green and Fourteen) in the example above.
(There's even a more tightly rhymed alternative, which I'll propose here for completeness:
The Fourteener rhyming couplet was popular in sixteenth and seventeenth century English poetry. But its usage back then was much less constrained than the form I have fallen in love with - only rhyming the last word of each line. The familiar old nursery rhyme provides an example:
By contrast, you could rewrite this to form my peculiar tight-rhymed Fourteener thusly:
As you see, this form is more tightly restricted. And yet I find it fascinating to construct these. I've done more than a hundred to date. An extended example appears in my Book Review of Lord of the Rings.
Another internally rhymed example that most everyone is familiar with is the old spiritual 'Amazing Grace'.
I like this form also, but to me the more tight rhyming style just seems to resonate better as a true Fourteener. (Amazing Grace might be considered a four line 4-3-4-3 format with alternate rhyme scheme rather than a Fourteener couplet.)
So, since about the first of the year, I've been developing skill at writing my 'signature' RGB (Red, Green, Blue) format. For my ongoing 'magnum opus' novel project, Ice King, Annals of the Seventh Shepherd, for which a free preview is available here, I've chosen to begin every chapter with a Tight-Rhymed Fourteener Couplet epigraph. Here's the four-couplet epigraph that introduces the book followed by some examples of chapter epigraph couplets. Enjoy.
He dwells, 'tis said, where glaciers spread - "For lo!" the prophet cries,
"From icebound womb, ere crack of doom, our final King must rise."
Examples of chapter epigraphs: