The Non-Expert


The Vote Not Shaken

Experts answer what they know. The Non-Expert answers anything. This week we help a reader choose between political candidates by applying modern poetry to the process.

Have a question? Need some advice? Ignored by everyone else? Send us your questions via email. The Non-Expert handles all subjects and is updated on Fridays, and is written by a member of The Morning News staff.


* * *

Question: How are you supposed to choose between the candidates when all the news reports only talk about HOW the races are GOING, not WHAT they’re ABOUT? I am not looking for poetry, but some straight facts on the candidates’ policy ideas or beliefs. Come on I would think you guys would be equally upset or MORE about how America is being hijacked by BIG MEDIA and the PARTIES behind the politics. —Stephen Kanter

Answer: With thanks to E.E. Cummings’s “Buffalo Bill’s,” Robert Frost’s “The Road Not Taken,” and William Carlos Williams’s “The Red Wheelbarrow”

Michigan Mitt’s

Michigan Mitt ’s
           who always
           sports some stallionmane’s-silver
and beats onetwothreefourfive republicansjustlikethat
                                                                                                              Joseph Smith

he is a handsome man
           and what I want to know is
how do you like your blackhaired boy
Mister Death Penalty

The Vote Not Shaken

Two votes diverged in a metal booth,
And sorry I could not stand for both
And be one voter, I became a sleuth
And Googled one to find the truth
About whether she’d spur economic growth;

Then Googled the other, just to be fair,
He had perhaps the better chance,
Because he was young, with hope and
Though also not that into prayer.

I suspect they shared that stance,
And both that primary equally blessed
One a woman and one black.
White male candidates must be stressed!
They couldn’t even take the Midwest.

I cast my vote and didn’t look back.
It was at least worth a try.
But honestly, I’m still kind of on the fence:
Two votes diverged in a metal booth, and I—
I picked the super charismatic guy,
And it didn’t make that much difference.

The Red Ohio

so much depends

a red O

crazed with vain

beside the right
talking heads