Presidential Inauguration 2005

Seeing as how we are in the midst of political conventions and on the cusp of making important voting decisions, I thought this might be a good time to send out a poem I wrote on the occasion of George Bush’s inauguration, the beginning of an administration that led us into Iraq, among other places. I got the information about the gifts bestowed on important guests from the newspaper. I hope the poem will help readers to understand how crucial this year’s vote will be to all of us.


Presidential Inauguration 2005


I read the morning’s news, imagined

the private jets whining down

onto the D.C. tarmac


and later the glitter of the gifts

the gold Rolexes,

his and hers,


imagined this

country club crowd

stuffed into black limousines


and sequined gowns,

the men in patent leather shoes

beneath their tuxedos,


at the banquets

the sparkle of the

Dom Perignon.


Then on this hoar-frost morning

I went out to listen to my constituency:

yellowthroat warblers and western tanagers,


California quail and scrub jays,

towhees and western thrashers,

American goldfinches and the lesser goldfinches


along with waves of white-crowned sparrows.


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I've been writing mostly poetry for many years and have gotten a number of works accepted in publications and anthologies. I'm most interested in communicating with poets for whom craft is a high priority. I enjoy finding and commenting on poetic gems in other people's work. For my own work, I welcome polite comments, whether positive or critical.

7 thoughts on “Presidential Inauguration 2005”

    1. thank you, chris. probably the birds that i listened to are a different lot than the ones around your place! interesting to see how you describe the dichotomy: between real and not. i hadn’t thought in those terms but i certainly understand how you would characterize the unreal as “dangerous and pervasive,” after watching some of the republican convention this week. i appreciate you sharing your insights.


  1. I love this. It so eloquently points out the confusion between what we are told is important, those hallmark badges of what we cannot “live” without — gold and glitter and emblems of status; and what, in truth, sustains us — our connection to and interdependence on the natural world. If only we would collectively awaken and gain this level of consciousness.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. thanks for sharing your insights, carrie. now that you mention it, i think that inaugurations do reveal some folks’ values that are tawdry and empty at the same time. but they are held up as the elite for all to emulate. just looking at the magazine covers at the grocery store checkout stands is enough to give me a headache! (hm, i think i’m sounding like a grump!) i’d much prefer to be sitting outside watching the red-headed woodpeckers storing up acorns in the big valley oaks, a raucous and flamboyant process but so sustaining of one’s spirit.


  3. This is quite wonderful. To me it speaks of the difference of two worlds, the rich, sparkly “vacant” one and the natural, earthy (truly important one). I imagined the rich politicians in a Fitzgerald-ish type celebration. Great work!

    Liked by 1 person

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