Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Poem for Wednesday, National Arboretum, Election 2010

Exquisite Candidate
By Denise Duhamel and Maureen Seaton

I can promise you this: food in the White House
will change! No more granola, only fried eggs
flipped the way we like them. And ham ham ham!
Americans need ham! Nothing airy like debate for me!
Pigs will become the new symbol of glee,
displacing smiley faces and "Have A Nice Day."
Car bumpers are my billboards, billboards my movie screens.
Nothing I can say can be used against me.
My life flashes in front of my face daily.
Here's a snapshot of me as a baby. Then
marrying. My kids drink all their milk which helps the dairy industry.
A vote for me is not only a pat on the back for America!
A vote for me, my fellow Americans, is a vote for everyone like me!
If I were the type who made promises
I'd probably begin by saying: America,
relax! Buy big cars and tease your hair
as high as the Empire State Building.
Inch by inch, we're buying the world's sorrow.
Yeah, the world's sorrow, that's it!
The other side will have a lot to say about pork
but don't believe it! Their graphs are sloppy coloring books.
We're just fine—look at the way
everyone wants to speak English and live here!
Whatever you think of borders,
I am the only candidate to canoe over Niagara Falls
and live to photograph the Canadian side.
I'm the only Julliard graduate—
I will exhale beauty all across this great land
of pork rinds and gas stations and scientists working for cures,
of satellite dishes over Sparky's Bar & Grill, the ease
of breakfast in the mornings, quiet peace of sleep at night.


My kids had no school for election day and Paul had a day off to use before the end of the year, so we took the kids plus Adam's friend Daniel Wigle to the National Arboretum to see the fall color in Washington. There were bonsai with their leaves changing -- with only a couple of carpenter bees living in the wood of their enclosure, rather than the dozens of summer -- and more color in the woods behind the National Capitol Columns, plus some late summer roses and fall flowers in the beds around the visitor center, where the big koi are still swimming around the fountains. It was a gorgeous albeit chilly day to walk outdoors.

The National Capitol Columns, which formerly held up the Capitol Building dome, at the National Arboretum.

Despite the season and the cool weather, there were plenty of flowers and quite a few bees...

...and not a lot of other people around, so we had the place almost to ourselves.

Like Brookside Gardens, the National Arboretum had chrysanthemums on display.

The leaves on the trees in the bonsai pavilions were changing with the seasons.

The koi didn't seem to mind the cold water.

I'm not sure whether the sundials are on Eastern Standard or Daylight Savings time.

Adam enjoyed getting to take photos for his photography class and projects.

We came home in the late afternoon to vote, which went very quickly; rumor had it that voter turnout was low in our county, and we got an e-mail from our incumbent governor (who was expected easily to defeat his opponent) begging us to please go to the polls. Maryland did reelect our Democratic governor rather than the Republican he succeeded, and Senator Mikulski won too, and Christine O'Donnell lost -- I was ready to move to Canada ASAP if she somehow won -- but there's very little good news otherwise. In fact, the only news all night that has really made me smile was Jon Stewart's report, "In New York...Carl Paladino's campaign to not be elected governor has succeeded!"

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