Tuesday, November 11, 2008


I came upon this poem just this morning. Have never read it before. Written in 1932.
I liked it enough to want to share with you gentle readers.

(On another annoying point--Nash being annoyed by the non-voters: several of you have emailed to let me know you are unable to post comments on the blogsite. I'm really sorry about that--I would love to read your responses--and I have the same problem; I sometimes am unable to post on my mentor Emily's wonderful blogsite, "Hamartia and Cheese Sandwiches." Who understands the whimseys of the goddess Cyberia?)

Election Day Is a Holiday

People on whom I do not bother to dote
Are people who do not bother to vote
Heaven forbid that they should ever be exempt
From contumely, obloquy, and various kinds of contempt.

Some of them like Toscanini and some like Rudy Vallée
But all of them take about as much interest in their right to ballot as in their right to ballet.
They haven’t voted since the heyday of Miss Russell (Lillian)
And excuse themselves by saying What’s the difference of one vote in fifty million?

They have such refined and delicate palates
That they can discover no one worthy of their ballots,
And then when someone terrible gets elected
They say There, that’s just what I expected!

And they go around for four years spouting discontented criticisms
And contented witticisms,
And then when somebody to oppose the man they oppose gets nominated
They say Oh golly, golly, he’s the kind of man I’ve always abominated,
And they have discovered that if you don’t take time out to go to the polls
You can manage very nicely to get through thirty-six holes.

Oh let us cover these clever people very conspicuously with loathing,
For they are un-citizens in citizens’ clothing.
They attempt to justify their negligence
On the ground that no candidate appeals to people of their integligence,
But I am quite sure that if Abraham Lincoln (Rep.) ran against Thomas Jefferson (Dem.),
Neither man would be appealing enough to squeeze a vote out of them.

--Ogden Nash (1932)

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