Metre (2)

When metre seems hard to scan, it’s often from focusing too much on individual words rather than on the sound of the line as a whole. Let the words run together in the ear, saying the line aloud over and over if necessary, until the natural rise and fall become more audible. Of course, if every word the poet chooses has only one syllable, the metrical pattern could be anything. That’s why it’s always a good idea to include two-syllable or longer words to fix where some of the stresses must fall, and keep the listener from misconstruing the beats.