Election Poetry

        *For starters, history buff Henry Wadsworth Longfellow:*

        Listen, my children, don't dare ignore,
        The midnight actions of Bush and Gore
        In early November, the year ought-ought,
        Hard to believe the mess they wrought.
        Two billion bucks of campaign bounty
        All came down to Palm Beach County.
        What result could have been horrider
        Than the situation we found in Florider?

        *Edgar Allen Poe is his usual gloomy self:*

        Once upon a campaign dreary,
        one which left us weak and weary
        O'er many a quaint and curious promise of political lore,
        While we nodded, nearly napping,
        suddenly there came a yapping,
        As of some votes overlapping, energy-zapping to the core
        "'Tis a mess here," we all muttered,
        as the network anchors stuttered,
        Stuttered over Bush and Gore.
        Could there be another election
        with such a case of misdirection,
        One with such a weak selection,
        yet fraught with tension to the core?
        Quoth the ravers, "Nevermore."

        *Britain's Edward Lear's limerick is lighter:*

        There once was a U.S. election
        That called for some expert detection -
        How thousands of pollers
        Could become two-holers
        Like outhouses of recollection.

        *Ditto Ogden Nash:*

        I regret to admit that all my knowledge
        is what I learned at Electoral College,
        So tell me please, though I hate to troubya,
        Will the winner be Al, or will it be Dubya?

        *Joyce Kilmer as a media analyst:*

        I thought that I would never see
        The networks all so up a tree.

        *Walt Whitman is lyrical, as always:*

        O' Captain! My Captain! our fearful trip's not done
        The ship has weather'd every rack, but nobody knows who's won.

        *Alfred Noyes rhythmically rumbles:*

        And still of an autumn night they say, with the
        White House on the line,
        When the campaign's a ghostly galleon and both
        candidates cry, "'Tis mine!"
        When the road is a ribbon of ballots, all within easy reach,
        A highwayman comes riding,
        Riding, Riding,
        A highwayman comes riding, and punches two holes in each.

        *Dr. Seuss takes a look at election officials:*

        I cannot count them in a box
        I cannot count them with a fox
        I cannot count them by computer
        I will not with a Roto-Rooter
        I cannot count them card-by-card
        I will not 'cause it's way too hard
        I cannot count them on my fingers
        I will not while suspicion lingers.
        I'll leave the country in a jam -
        I can't count ballots, Sam-I-Am.

        *Clement Moore adopts a holiday theme:*

        'Twas the month before Christmas,
        when all through the courts,
        All the plaintiffs made stirring bad ballot reports.
        Which leaves the problem:
        Perhaps the best way to stop complaints that are raucous
        is start over again, with the Iowa caucus.

        *Finally, I leave for you the most thought provoking of all:*

        "It's not who votes that counts, but who counts the votes."
        --- Josef Stalin

[ Author unknown -- from Stephen Dumas, via Tim Davis ]


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