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Transcript

Ode to Election 2004

Tuesday, November 2, 2004; 10:00 AM

It's November 2nd but let us weep not
Though campaigns may end, they are never forgot
So let's celebrate the best and the worst
Of campaign '04, through poetic verse


Give us your limericks, your haikus and sonnets
Your Seussian babble and off-rhyming couplets
Submit your ode to Election '04
We'll post all the best (the rest we'll ignore)


The transcript does follow
But let's hear not of sorrow
New poems await
In 2008.

Editor's Note: Washingtonpost.com moderators retain editorial control over Live Online discussions and choose the most relevant questions for guests and hosts; guests and hosts can decline to answer questions.

_____________

Ahem...: You didn't say
What we want to know most:
If we decide to play,
When will you post?!;

:

_______________________

Nashville, Tenn.:
Ten hours to go
And campaigning will be gone
Freedom's on the march!

:

_______________________

Arlington, Va.: Written by my 9 year old daughter, Ariel....

Democracy, Democracy!
Bush or Kerry?
Democracy, Democracy!
I think they're both Scary!

:

_______________________

Falls Church, Va.:
Rambling lefty or
disinterested cowboy
Oi, such meshuggas

:

_______________________

Palm Beach County, Fla.:
In Palm Beach we have our affections
Hurricanes, deep tans and elections.
Too bad it's not Gore
Again in '04.
Okay, so we lack circumspection.

:

_______________________

Washington, D.C.: O'Reilly, Carlson, Coulter, Wonkette
There's something here I'm starting to get.
Come Nov. 3 the above will be hist
Disappeared like ghosts, not to be missed.
So wish them goodbye, over them do not fret
Let's send them away on a big one-way jet.

:

_______________________

Oldsmar, Fla.: In our home, debates galore,
One for Bush, one for Kerry.
Catholic-Jewish -- some concerns.
How on earth did we marry?!

(married 32 years)

:

_______________________

Virginia:
There once was a man from Boston
Who didn't like tax cuts and often
Said no in the Senate
He just didn't get it
And now his record will cost him

:

_______________________

Indianapolis, Ind.:
I went to the poll to vote
And it really got my goat
To get a paper ballot--
"Mark darkly to be valid"--
Instead of a machine
That makes the process clean.
I strayed outside the oval,
Considered starting over,
But walked away just wondering
How many would be blundering?

:

_______________________

Louisville, Ky.:
President Kerry
No more Bush in White House
Red Sox World Series

:

_______________________

Arlington, Va.:
Naming a winner
You had better get it right
Or please don't call it

:

_______________________

Gaborone, Botswana:
There once was a Sunshine State
Whose fate people love to debate.
Will it be red, blue, or green?
Somewhere in between?
The answer -- undoubtedly late.

:

_______________________

California:
Agonizing wait --
twelve hours til Daily Show.
Must have satire!

:

_______________________

Alexandria, Va.:
Long lines at the polls in the cold
No coffee or donuts were sold
The worst of it yet is that people will get
The flu if they're over 60 years old

:

_______________________

Haikuville, Va.:
Touch screen to cast vote
Nice technology - sure - but
Where's the paper trail?

:

_______________________

Arlington, Va.:
I love you, George Bush,
The White House is your home,
Go away, Munster.

:

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Essex, Vt.: There once was a man from Austin
Whose opponent did hail from Boston
He cut rich mens' taxes
Waged war on the Axis
And this the election might cost him

:

_______________________

Cincinnati, Ohio:
Picking George W or his nemesis Kerry,
The pundits believe should make us feel merry;
But truth be told if it were really the news,
A vote cast for either one gives me the blues.

:

_______________________

Fort Washington, Md.:
The line was so long
All I got was a sticker
Now I'm late for work

:

_______________________

Louisville, Ky.:
You've got to admit, the season's been hairy,
Whether you voted for Bush or for Kerry.
Nonstop politicos, pundits and anchors
Spreading their wisdom like so many cankers,
Predicting with glee what the outcome will be
Could cause one to wonder if one should not flee
To the furthermost end of the Isle of Mauritius
Where election palaver perhaps might not reach us.

:

_______________________

Champaign, Ill.:
Consider once-hot Howard Dean
His goose cooked by an overplayed scream
Atop whom they had smiled on
The media now piled on
Just for letting off Iowa steam

:

_______________________

Beltsville, Md.:
fall leaves... cars... voters...
swarm my local polling place
I'll come back at lunch

:

_______________________

Arlington, Va.:
The best thing about voting today
Was having a last name beginning with A to K.
So past those burdened with L to Z
I pressed forward with celerity,
Did my duty, and still caught the 7:58.

:

_______________________

Alexandria, Va.:
I'm here 'cause my country needs savin'
but this voting booth must be mistaken
this ballot's my voice
but my only choice
is between two rich men from New Haven

:

_______________________

Baltimore, Md.:
My short wait in line
Seemed so inconsequential
After four long years

:

_______________________

Burkittsville, Md.:
a Republican wife
all the whils't we've been married,
finally saw the light,
and voted for Kerry.

:

_______________________

Indianapolis, Ind.:
I went to the poll to vote
And it really got my goat
To get a paper ballot --
"Mark darkly to be valid" --
Instead of a machine
That makes the process clean.
I strayed outside the oval,
Considered starting over,
But walked away just wondering
How many would be blundering?

:

_______________________

Washington, D.C.: Twins who Disagree

I voted this morning
with all of my might
hoping that Kerry
would not be
contrite.

Hoping that Bush
would be sorry
he'd made
mess after mess
as he prayed
and betrayed.

I have a twin brother
who doesn't agree
He thinks Bush
is grand
and that I'm
bourgeoisie.

Now if Eric could
only change just this one thing
he'd be perfect
ideal
and indeed he would bring:
Reason
and Goodness
and Peace
to bear
on a world full of fear
on a world that's right-wing.

A Democrat
he would need to be
in order for me
to agree and decree:
"That he's free of their hold
(these men who do make
Scrooge look like Santa
since goodness they fake).

So on this day
we call
the election
Let brother Rick
consider deflection.

Then he will indeed
on this day
be, to me,
more than Eric the Red (neck):
He'd be Eric the Free!

:

_______________________

Washington, D.C.:
There once were two men from Yale
In polls, neither did trail!
'Till that November night,
When each got a fright,
As the people let Nader prevail!

:

_______________________

Cincinnati, Ohio: The snickety-snack of the punch-card machines,
Are counting, we hope, to a victory seen;
Please before the snow flies, before the grass greens.

Chingity-chiming in a Florida school,
No more hanging chads, boy, those touch screens are cool.
But can they objectively choose who will rule?

Or will it come down, yet again, to a fight?
With each side asserting that they have the right,
To be President, King, crowned in public sight.

For all of the hoopla, you'd think we might rate,
If not a hiatus, at least a good break.
But I bet you a dollar, shoot, make it ten,
That early next year, we're back at it again.

:

_______________________

Baltimore, Md.:
Time to say goodbye to Bush,
Don't let the door hit him in the tush.

:

_______________________

Bowie, Md.:
I have never been
so proud as when I saw that
long line of voters

:

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Colorado Springs, Colo.: I remember seeing this in a joke book , like, 40 years ago, and it still cracks me up every time I think of it.

The election is over
The results are known
The will of the people
has clearly been shown

So let's forget our quarrels
And show by good deed
That we'll give our new leaders
All the help that they need.

Let's let bygones be bygones
And let bitterness Pass
I'll hug your elephant
And you kiss my ...donkey.

:

_______________________

Silver Spring, Md.:
Oh-why-oh-why-oh-why-oh
Did I ever leave Ohio?
My vote has been cast
In a state whose electoral importance seems past
Oh-why-oh-why-oh-why-oh
Did I ever leave Ohio?

:

_______________________

Chicago, Ill.:
I simply can't take
the stress of this election.
Please give me a drink!

:

_______________________

Arlington, VA:
The universe's
most important election
ever, they say. Huh?

:

_______________________

Washington, D.C.:
I work in a firm of Republicans.
Tomorrow they shall be weeping.
A martini I shall be sipping.

:

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Sausalito, Calif.:
I couldn't vote Carter
couldn't vote for Reagan
Couldn't vote for Bush 1
It's a statement I am makin'
Couldn't vote for Perot
Not Dole nor even Bush Two
Can't vote for him the second time
And Dean scared me with his "Wahoo!"
So, now I'm left with Kerry
Without knowing what he'll do
But, one thing I am certain of
Oh, yes, it's what I really know
I'd rather cast my vote in Sausalito
Than in good 'ol O-Hi-O

:

_______________________

Sheridan, Ark.:
Kerry/Edwards - what a pair;
'Nuff to make my soul despair.
Ruff'em, scuff 'em; toss 'em out;
Give us Bush without a doubt!

:

_______________________

Arlington, Va.:
The lines were so long
Where were these people last year?
The school board counts, too.

:

_______________________

Richardson, Tex.:
I'm so tired of hearing the phone
Campaigners won't leave me alone
No peace at my dinner
I starve and get thinner
The pollsters diet is beating the Zone

So for the campaigners calling for Bush
Please just let me sit on my tush
Please leave me in peace
Your calling, please cease
And let me enjoy my bowl full of mush

And the pollsters that are calling for Kerry
Just let me eat drink and be merry!
I've got a nice life
Two kids and a wife
Who's a teacher, a good one, and very!

So no votes for a Rep. or a Dem.
Both always talk "us vs. them"
Third parties for me
No calls, now you see
And for that peace I'll shout out, "AMEN!!"

:

_______________________

Washington, D.C.:
While today has seen high voter turnout,
it's accompanied by high voter burnout.
Lackluster speeches, lackluster debates,
lackluster commercials from lackluster candidates.
Of die-hard supporters there's hardly a chorus,
for choosing the lesser of evils is the choice that's before us.
So to celebrate the demise of this pathetic campaign,
let us go home tonight and uncork the Champagne.

:

_______________________

Slidell, La.:
If Kerry should win,
everyone will have catsup
atop their waffles.

:

_______________________

Crawford, Tex.:
This sand feels so cozy
packed tight 'round my head
where facts cannot reach me,
unseen and unread

No Post and no Tattler,
Dispatch or Tribune
No Sentinel, Monthly,
Or Times-Picayune

I'm keeping my cranium
snug here in my tush
so you can bet yours
that I'm voting for Bush

:

_______________________

Arlington, Va.:
Oy vey---the line today!
three interviews, one exit poll
too bad I showed up in sweats to dash the cold

:

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Alexandria, Va.:
We wait for an hour
The line is so long
The guy right behind me
Is chatty and wrong!

The poll watchers friendly
In spite of the wait
I'm glad I got in there
Before it's too late!

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Notre Dame, Ind.:
Republicans are red
Democrats are blue
Just remember to vote
It's the right thing to do!

:

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Laurel, Md.:
there was, to the best of my knowledge
this thing called "electoral college"
which did unjustly bloat
when it ignored the popular vote
yet no candidate will even acknowledge

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Baltimore, Md.:
politcal pundits and polls
call the race dead even
Can't wait for their surprise
with a Kerry landslide this evenin'

:

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Fairfax, Va.: ‘Twas the Nigh Before the Election (2004)

‘Twas the night before the election, when all through the states
The candidates went out campaigning with their running mates.

They placed those political signs on the roadsides with care,
In hopes that undecided voters would give them a stare.

The lawyers were all ready and waiting to feign,
While Floridians and recounts danced in their brains.

And Bush with his crooked grin, and Kerry with his small smile,
Had dashed on to Wisconsin and Iowa for a while.

When out in Ohio there arose such a worry,
The margin was close, so the men had better hurry!

Away to that state they flew like a flash,
It's a wonder that their jets did not crash.
There the candidates preached well into the night,
But this did not allay that voter's eve fright.

When, what to voters' wondering eyes should appear,
But news coverage of this Election Day fear.
With a dark-haired man engaged in constant blather,
They knew in a moment it must be Dan Rather.

More rapid than lightning speed his words they came,
And he prattled on, uttering name after name.

"Now, Bush! Now, Cheney! Now, Edwards and Kerry!
On, first-time voters! On, old voters! Press on and be wary!
To the lines at the polls! To the voting stall!
Now vote away! Dash away! Vote away, all!"

As the night wore on, workers readied the polls.
They checked and double-checked the voter rolls,
And tested the machines for any sign of malfunction,
For tomorrow they knew would be a critical junction.

They spoke not a word, but kept on with their work,
Then sat for a moment, and realized with a jerk,
That not a word could be heard, the debates had ended.
The country was sleeping, the election suspended.

And then, in a twinkling, poll workers heard in the streets
The prancing and pawing of early voters' feet!
As they sat in trepidation at the polling places,
Lines of people waited outside for the Presidential races.

It was time now to begin that much-publicized election,
And this year they all hoped it would be without objection.
One by one they soared in to exercise their right to choose,
And one by one they worried if their guy would lose.

Then they sprang back to work, donning an "I Voted" sticker,
And the day was filled with many a political blitz and bicker.

As the polls closed and nightfall dawned once again,
They waited to hear their favorite guy's name.
Now, Bush! Now, Cheney! Now, Edwards and Kerry!
Who can it be? Who can it be?!? The results would vary!

They would have to wait until tomorrow, Dan Rather said.
The results would keep coming long after they were abed.

But as they dressed in their nightshirts to retire,
And felt more and more that the results would be dire,
They heard Rather exclaim, as he sat so contrite,

Happy Election Day to All!
And to All a Sleepless Night!

:

_______________________

Clinton, Md.: What a year this has been, all over,
From Tempe to Pittsburgh to Dover!
The blogs and the zines,
The voting machines,
I'm glad this campaign is over!

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Gaithersburg, Md.:
The judge heard and ruled
no need for paper receipts
vote in the Matrix

:

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Greenbelt, Md.:
if I should spy a butterfly
meand'ring on the breeze,
I shall observe it flutter by
as swift as it doth please.
but if I see a ballot of
a butterfly design,
I'll raise voice to the skies above
and stamp my feet and whine!

:

_______________________

San Diego, Calif.:
On the dawn of the day of decision,
Neighbors frowned with uncommon derision.
Elephants roared, donkeys brayed,
While a bystander prayed,
"May it come down to simple addition."

:

_______________________

Arlington, Va.: I waited on line for two hours today
I am now out a few hours of pay
That wouldn't matter,
that my wallet's less fatter,
if my state didn't always go one way

I wish that my vote did count
that the obstacle wasn't impossible to surmount,
but the south of my state
carries more weight
and of Democratic NOVA they take no account

:

_______________________

Arlington, Va.:
Bush and Kerry are done. They have spoken.
I'm laughing so hard that I'm chokin'.
All that was said
Is now mush in my head.
I believe the system is broken.

:

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Vancouver, Wash.:
rainy windy day.
lines around the block. glad I
voted absentee.

:

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Santa Cruz, Calif.:
Kerry and Dubya
Dick Cheney and John Edwards
I'm gonna get drunk!

:

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Grinnell, Iowa:
We here in Iowa
Have gotten so tired of
The pol(l)s and ads and press:
All that trashing makes a mighty mess.

:

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San Antonio, Tex.: Election limerick

This election is far from a beauty
Neither candidate is a real cutie
The Bushies make merry
While slandering Kerry
But he at least, was present for duty!

:

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Annapolis, Md.:
There once was a prezzy named Dubbayoo,
Who told all the rich guys, "I lubba yoo.
But for others, it's hard
Unless you use lard,
To put food on your family."
(Use Super Glue).

:

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Stuttgart, Germany:
Trying to vote overseas
Has NOT been a breeze
Although I did strive
The ballot took over two months to arrive
Now it's in the mail, in a rush
Goodbye Mr. Bush!

:

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Aliso Viejo, Calif.: Bush States are Red
Kerry's are Blue
I hope you voted for
(You know who)

:

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London, Ontario, Canada:
'Tis the process, not the outcome
Vote a saint, elect a bum
Who knows his own mind tomorrow
For minds mutate, to voters' sorrow:

_______________________

Potomac, Md. and London, U.K.:
It is very late.
The election's not yet called.
I want a cookie.

:

_______________________

Washington, D.C:
You down with G-O-P
Ya you know me.

:

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Hyattsville, Md.:
Bush has done his political stint in
The White House; it's time for some ventin'
Who will win on Wednesday?
Well if I had my say
End this nonsense, just bring back Bill Clinton!

:

_______________________

Alexandria, Va.:
some of these people are funny
but some of them are for Bush
that makes me a little bit cranky
so I'm giving election poetry the push

:

_______________________

Silver Spring, Md.:
Kerry
Bush
O'Reilly
Moyers
Take your umbrella --
it's raining lawyers.

:

_______________________

Springfield, Va.:
when P. Diddy woke
did he know which poll to tell
his driver to go?

:

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Silver Spring, Md.:
I wrote a long poem about voting.
I'm waiting to see it online.
It had some potential church and state issues,
But other than that it was fine.

I guess you don't care for my meter.
Well, sure, it can get pretty odd.
I have some sort of a strange problem with rythm.
'Cuz my mother grew up on Cape Cod.

One half of my family's from Texas.
The other half from Boston, Mass.
If you don't think that makes an election like this confusing,
I'll just have to ask you to pass.

My other poem said "Love your neighbor,"
and be sure to get out and vote.
Well, if there was something offensive about that so you can't post it.
Then I'll step right out of this boat.

When someone takes time to write poetry,
and posts it online in a chat,
it ought to be put right out there on the web,
so others can read it like that.

:

_______________________

Rockville, Md.: (free verse)

English, Spanish,
One ballot, one people.
Electrons light the screen in two tongues
so that all are heard.
I voted! Yo voté!

:

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Washington, D.C.:
The TVs are silent, the ads on hiatus,
No longer trumpeting who is the greatest.
Well, that's what my friends say: they're glad to be free.
But nobody "sold" me -- I live in D.C.

:

_______________________

Arlington, Va.:
Around the block
That vote did Rock
What an election day
I'm Kerry-ied away!

:

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Takoma Park, Md.: A glorious day --
Leaves swirl and they fall
The line for the polls
Wound its way through the hall.

I touched in my choice,
And picked up my sticker
Then ran for my train -
Wishing I could go quicker!

But what's the big hurry -
We won't know the news
'Til well after midnight -
Which guy did we choose?

And how much does it matter -
Won't the bright leaves still fall?
Will the world stop turning?
Did it matter at all?

:

_______________________

Arlington, Va.:
A two-hour line
to place a vote that won't count
God Bless America

:

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Philadelphia, Pa.:
Election night
Returns-watching parties
Fridges stocked with beer
No matter what the outcome
We will unify as
The Coalition of the Swilling

:

_______________________

Windsor, Conn.:
Twas chilly, yet the voting droves
Did gossip and small talk in the queue
And friendly were the monitors
As the marked off who was who

Beware the hanging chad, my son!
The paper cuts, mark who you mean.
Beware the penciled ballot, and shun
The no-trail touch screen.

:

_______________________

Minneapolis, Minn.:
One man is simple
Another is rather vague
One more choice, please sir?

:

_______________________

Denver, Colo.:
There once was a man named Kerry
Whose decisions might seem to vary
For he weighed and he pondered
But his mind seldom wandered
For to make a wrong choice he was wary

:

_______________________

Washington, D.C.:
It's finally here, November the Second
The day John Kerry will win the Election
CNN says young voters decided by Springsteen
Take it from me, here's what we're really thinking:
I'm unemployed but have a college degree.
W's tax cuts? What's in it for me?
My friends are serving in Iraq,
Who knows if or when they'll ever come back.
Gay marriage? Sure, I'm cool with that.
Let's just oust the right-wing bureaucrats!
Celebs running around saying "Vote or Die, baby!"
Me, I'm just grateful for Elizabeth Cady.
She got me the vote, and I used it today,
Now on to the election parties, it's time to play!

:

_______________________

Washington, D.C.:
Thank goodness it was sunny
for the poll lines weren't funny
and my wait was quite painful
fellow voters, disdainful.
I chose not to bicker
though the tension grew thicker
because I did it all
for the "I voted" sticker.

:

_______________________

Birmingham, Ala.:
The polls would move faster
If poll workers would master
The art of alphabetizing
"L" comes before "S"
But you're doing your best
(Deep breath)... I'll stop criticizing.

:

_______________________

Roanoke, Va.:
The anticipation is certainly mounting,
After months of polling and counting.
While the victor and spouse,
Will win the White House.
For the loser remains lots of accounting.

:

_______________________

Clarksville, Md.:
Flip-flop, changes mind/
Stands his ground, won't reassess…
Which one works for you?

:

_______________________

Anonymous:
I couldn't make my mind between
A doof or a waffling preen
They both are such schlups
I threw my hands up
And I wrote in Charlie Sheen

:

_______________________

Mount Vernon, Va.:
All of you Dems are well meaning
Love the government when it's intervening
In my life and yours with more regulations
Trying to keep me away from temptations

So lest it go unsaid
You can kiss my tush
I used my head
I voted for Bush

:

_______________________

Annapolis, Md.:
Odious vultures of political posturing,
Hulking at polling plots, strangely salivering,
That midnight phantom ship sails through the mists of the past,
Umber shadows of Harding, and Lincoln, and Grant at the mast.

Oh decrepit lines of voters long gone,
The wind of a tempest blows chads through their dried carnelled bones,
A cavalry trumpet plays taps from far far away,
And fades in the tangerine light of this last autumn day.

:

_______________________

Fredericksburg, Va.:
Cowboy with high hopes
Misunderestimated
Git home to Texas

:

_______________________

Urbana, Ill.: A sticker proclaiming "I voted"
was worn on a jacket and noted
"It counted" was not
on the sticker one got
save a clique of electors, who gloated

:

_______________________

Virginia: Is it wrong
that I voted yes
on all bonds
Because I rent?

:

_______________________

Manassas, Va.:
As a Virginian I vote proudly for Bush,
As John Kerry needs more than a push,
Back to New Haven,
Where the politicos are craven,
And Teresa's billions are plush.

:

_______________________

Near Ravens' Training Camp, Md.: apologies to e.e. cummings...

Staring at the

s
i
z
e

of America

we
're a l o t

of people

millions,
in fact
two-hundred
seventy
two.

you surely must be
joke joke joking

if
Bush
and
Kerry
are the
best
we
can
do!

:

_______________________

Urbana, Ill.: The First Debate

Maybe ol' George was just tired
(Or else surreptitiously wired),
His performance relaying
What the voters are saying:
On November the Second he's fired.

:

_______________________

Windsor, Conn.:
Twas chilly, yet the voting droves
Did gossip and small talk in the queue
And friendly were the monitors
As they marked off who was who

Beware the hanging chad, my son!
The paper dents, the vote unseen.
Beware the penciled ballot, and shun
The frumious touch screen.

:

_______________________

College Park, Md.:
Are Bush and Kerry
Friend or Foe?
Either way
Everyone get ready
for the NWO.

:

_______________________

Silver Spring, Md.:
Voting is awful. Voting's the worst. Voting could
cause all your organs to burst. Election-day
waiting is painful, you see: While you wait at the
polls you're unable to pee.

And the TV reporting that seems never to end.
After hours on the couch, you're unable to bend:
Not your knees or your neck or your ears or your
waist. While the droning and spinning turns your
brain into paste.

So, whatever you do, just make sure you don't
vote. Because casting a ballot, makes you feel
like a goat.

:

_______________________

Washington, D.C.:
I cannot sit still,
I cannot delay,
I wants to go home
it's election day!

I must sit by the tube
not a second to lose
to watch the returns
and drink some good booze!

Oh the day does not end
the time goes so slow
I want to go watch CNN
and drink some merlot!

The paper it says
final decision may not be today
so I will go home
and drink anyway.

:

_______________________

Arlington, Va.: With apologies and gratitude to Lewis Carroll:
'Twas nightfall, and the eerie tubes
Did glow and gibber in the gloom
All flimsy were the speculates
And the spin meisters fume

Beware the Pundit-talk, my child
The jaws that gab, the prattling horde
Beware the Pundit-talk, so wild
And rightly deplored.

Oh take control of your remote
Early in the dawning night
And settle in on sofa wide,
To battle verbal blight

For as you sit, in hopes of end
The Pundit-talk, with words of flame
Comes slinging through, all sense suspend
While list'ning to them game

Red-blue! Red-blue! And back to you
The odious jeers will resonate
‘Til all are hoarse, without remorse
And no one's left to bait

So, hast thou heard ‘nough Pundit-talk?
Then stop your ears, oh wiseling child
Or press down "Mute" on that remoot
Lest you be over-riled

By nightfall, when the eerie tubes
Will glow and gibber in the gloom
With exit polls, and whining trolls,
Will rule-by-court resume?

:

_______________________

Gaithersburg, Md.:
Election pundits
debate vote totals -- it's my
new spectator sport.

:

_______________________

Bethesda, Md.:
Have you been hiding?
It's OK to come out now.
The ads stop tonight.

:

_______________________

Reston, Va.:
Months of voter polls
Crackle underfoot like leaves.
Only this one counts.

:

_______________________

Germantown, Md.: I had the urge to vote today
And to my appointed polling place I made my way
There before seven and ready to go
When election officials said 'sorry, but no.'

A technical glitch, the key cards don't work
We had ones for another polling place; a strange voting quirk
That kept us from voting for two hours or more
With frustrated voters coming in and out the door.

No word on when we'd be back on track
I went to have breakfast and then I came back
But no - that was futile, the problem remained
A long absence from work was clearly ordained.

Three hours from scheduled opening I finally voted
But I was lucky, and I want it noted
That polls will still close at 8 p.m. tonight
And some early morning folks may be nowhere in sight.

They came and they tried but the system was glitchy
No wonder some folks were just downright 'witchy.'
They couldn't vote in the a.m. without a long wait
And who know what effect that will have on our nation's fate.

:

_______________________

Washington, D.C.:
My Kerry vote will
Negate my ardent Bush friend's
It doesn't matter

:

_______________________

Gaithersburg, Md.:
Bush and Kerry met to debate
And discuss Iraq and healthcare.
Bush did frown, and seemed a clown,
And Kerry did have better hair.

:

_______________________

Pasadena, Calif.:
We're one of democracy's powers.
A long history of voting is ours.
But,whether it's Bush or it's Kerry,
Come next January --
Iraq's election will be saner than ours.

:

_______________________

Lansing, Mich.: Election 2004 or 2008

Undecided was I
Just don't like either guy,

Then my choice became clear
As I faced my REAL fear

In 2008 Hillary Rodham would be scary
So I went out today and voted for Kerry!

:

_______________________

Falls Church, Va.: Election Ode (with apologies to Dr. Seuss)

One vote,
two votes
red votes,
blue votes.

Black vote,
Hmong vote
old vote,
young vote.

This vote came from Tall 'Afar
This vote's from a big rock star.
Say, what a lot of votes there are!

Some states are red
and some are blue
but most don't seem to have a clue.

Some newsmen swear
and some despair
and some begin to tear their hair.

Why do they swear, and tear their hair?
I do not know. Go ask Jim Lehrer.

Some votes came late
and some came early
The late ones look a little squirrelly.

From there to here
from here to there
perfidies are everywhere.

Here are some who like to lie
They try to sneak votes on the sly.
Oh me. Oh my. Oh me. Oh my.
What a lot of shady votes squeak by.

Some vote two times, and some vote four.
Some vote six times, and some vote more.

The lawyers come from far and wide
to challenge votes against their side.
Where do they come from?
I can't say.
But I bet they have come a long, long way.
We see them come.
They will not go.
Until they've countered every blow.
Some take the high road,
some, the low.
And each behaves just like the other.
They file one lawsuit, then another.

Say look at his filings.
One, two three,
How many lawsuits do I see?
One, two, three, four
five, six, seven,
eight, nine, ten.
He filed eleven!
Eleven, this is something new.
We must file eleven too.

Spin. Spin. Spin. Spin.
The talking heads they grin and grin.
And facing this infernal din,
the honest arguments wear thin.
(Although it is a mortal sin,
we must admit with some chagrin,
it seems the only way to win.)

Who am I?
Sam is my name.
I do not like this legal game.
This is no good.
This is not right.
I toss and turn in bed all night.
And when the morning comes, oh dear,
the voting numbers still aren't clear.

We like the chaos on T.V.
It helps us win our case, you see.
We like the chaos -- this is why
It chills the soul when hopes get high.

Hello there Sam
How do you do?
Tell me, tell me what is new?
Is the election a Calam-
-ity? What's new? Please tell me Sam!

I do not like to grouse and grouse.
But I don't like John Thune -- that louse!
or Burr or Bunning, Keyes and Coors.
Oh what a Senate!
What a House!

Oh dear, oh dear.
We cannot hear.
Will you please come over near?
Will you please look in my ear?
Say, look.
A Rove was in your ear.
But he is out.
So have no fear.
Again your ear can hear, my dear.

(I know there's more, but it's a really really long book and I work for a living....)

:

_______________________

Cleveland, Ohio: Once upon a midnight dreary, while I watched with eyes a-bleary
Over many curious talking heads of television lore,
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of some one determinedly rapping, rapping at my apartment door.
"Tis MoveOn.org," I muttered, "pounding on my apartment door -
Only this, and nothing more."

Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the early November
As each Ohio state house member wrought his shadow o'or my door,
Eagerly I wished the morrow; vainly I had sought to borrow
From CNN surcease of sorrow - sorrow for the lost Al Gore
For the spirited and principled candidate the pundits named AlGore
Nameless here for evermore

And the brazen loud rustling of leaflets in the hallway
Thrilled me - filled me with fantastic terrors never felt before;
So that now, to still the beating of my heart, I stood repeating
"Tis some campaigner entreating entrance at my apartment door -
Some nose-ringed activist entreating entrance at my apartment door -
This it is, and nothing more."

Presently my soul grew stronger; hesitating then no longer,
"Sir," said I, "or Madam, truly your forgiveness I implore;
But the fact is I was napping, and so rudely you came rapping,
So rudely you came rapping, rapping at my apartment door,
Like Rove or Carville, a boor" - here I opened wide the door -
Leaflets strewn across the floor, only this and nothing more.

Deep into the paper peering, long I stood, wondering, fearing
Why I really should vote for Issue Four,
The TV chatter was unbroken; again O'Reilly was outspoken
Against my old favorite candidate, Al Gore
This he yelled, and an echo murmured back the words "Al Gore"
Merely this, and nothing more

Back into the apartment turning, all the bile within me churning
Soon again I heard a banging, even louder than before
I had had enough, I could take no more: "LEAVE ME ALONE", I slammed the door
Leave me to contemplate my lost Al Gore
Can Bush really be surging to the fore? Tell me, TV, I implore
Quoth O'Reilly, "Four More".

Newman, Redford and their ilk, while in Ohio put aside their silk
To humbly knock on my apartment door,
Yet we see through their thin disguise, even as we love their lies
"It is Ohio we adore"…always this, and Michael Moore
Please, God, stop banging my door, and leave me to contemplate my lost Al Gore.

:

_______________________

New York, N.Y.:
In the polling,
the mighty polling,
the donkey wins tonight.

:

_______________________

Washington, D.C.:
With the last of the votes almost in,
The voters still think that they pick who'll win,
As a student of law,
I can only guffaw,
And say Ha! Let the lawsuits begin.

:

_______________________

Austin, Tex.: Haiku for Election 04:

Hughes and Wolfowitz.
Rumsfeld, Ashcroft, Cheney, Rove.
Condoleeza this.

:

_______________________

Studying abroad in Beer Sheva, Israel: Across the pond and the med,
we've a 6-hour wait

We'll stay up very,
very late.

We'll throw them back
as the states are declared

"Drink one shot for your guy"
and two shots for theirs"

And by the time its decided,
the student abroad hasn't a care.

:

_______________________

Gaithersburg, MD: Oh my toes! Oh my toes!
Why did I wear stilletos?

I saw all my neighbors and all of my friends
Way in the back where the voting line ends

Thank goodness my attitude wasn't so sour
To vote…now that is to be [sort of] empowered

Washington would have been thrilled
His vision for our democracy filled

Until, wait! When the voting is done
Then all the lawsuits will have begun!

:

_______________________

Rockville, Md.:
I arrived home late last night,
found my voicmail blinking, a fright,
the voice that did greet me,
was one I heard sweetly:
ye-old-President Clinton with might.

The ex-pres asked me choose,
for the one who won't loose
he said cast your one vote,
for the one you do dote,
Senator Kerry, I toast you with booze!

:

_______________________

Anonymous:
the race is competitive
oh, what I wouldn't give
I'd give up my voice
for a real choice
huzzah, our democracy lives

:

_______________________

Washington, D.C.:
We have an American nation
That revels in democratization
In Kandahar and Kabul
Ballot boxes are full
While D.C. still lacks representation

:

_______________________

Bloomington, Ill.:
There once was an ambassador named Keyes
Whose politics did surely not please
The GOP sent him our way
But Obama had his say
And now floats to the senate on a breeze.

:

_______________________

San Francisco, Calif.: HAIKU

A lot of people
went to sign up for the votes
I hope Kerry wins

Jerrell Watson,
Everett Middle School
San Francisco, California

:

_______________________

Boca Raton, Fla.:
Two men for the pres were a-running,
To win they had to be cunning,
So they would lie and would cheat,
to get the high seat
and now I am done with my punning!

:

_______________________

Rockville, Md.:
Dubbya's campaign on the telly
Was dirty and lowdown and smelly
But Bush doesn't care
That Rove's nomme de guerre
Not surprisingly is Machiavelli

:

_______________________

Clarksville, Md.:
Thank goodness the end's finally near,
Though the outcome could be one I fear.
Yes, the slander and lies
should end soon, I surmise,
And for that, I'll enjoy a cold beer.

:

_______________________

Houston, Tex.:
Early exit polls
Show Kerry with momentum
Euros weep with joy

:

_______________________

Baltimore, Md.: Election Day haiku

In the end, there will
be one winner. But in this
moment, I have hope.

:

_______________________

Queenstown, Md.:
I am sick of Texas Bar b que
I yearn for French Fondue

:

_______________________

Rockville, Md.:
Great Hermaphrodite:
Chad is both hanging and
Visibly pregnant.

:

_______________________

Cincinnati, Ohio [HAIKU PAIR]: With humblest apologies to Basho:

Two candidates, but
With mostly the same programs.
What's the difference?

Could a race for Boss
Well-argued and staged by two
Be nothing at all?

:

_______________________

Anonymous:
Put down that white board
Or I will beat you with it.
You listening Russert?

:

_______________________

Washington, D.C.:
voting no problem!
In and out in ten minutes
score one for DC

:

_______________________

Indianapolis, Ind.: The election of two thousand four
Was hotter than that of Bush/Gore
Though lawsuits were filed
And the people were riled
The outcome was the same as before

:

_______________________

Virginia:
There once was a man from Texas
Who didn't find too much complex, thus
His talk's black and white
And he's itchin to fight
So either your with or against us

:

_______________________

washingtonpost.com:
The hour is late
And the race is still tight
But it's way past our bedtimes
So we must say goodnight

Thanks for the response
Wish we could have posted all
But we can do it again
When we have a recall!

:

_______________________


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