Tuesday, November 8, 2016

For the first time in my life, I voted by absentee ballot, so I won't be standing in line at the Harmony School today. I won't be dropping my pencil-marked ballot paper into the ancient wooden ballot box, guarded by the town clerk's tottering elderly husband. No one will call out "Democrat!" or, worse yet, "Poet!" when I walk into the school library. I feel sentimental about missing out on my final Harmony voting experience.

Still, absentee ballot voting was also fun. Paul and I voted together at the kitchen counter as he fizzed over with excitement about his first presidential election. It was a different kind of sentimental pleasure, and one I was happy not to miss.

So today, instead of driving to the polls, I will be driving to the vet to buy tapeworm medicine for the cat . . . which, in its own way, will be an appropriate metaphoric denouement for this wretched electioneering season. And then tonight I will attend an old-hippie election party, which will also be exactly appropriate for my final vote in Harmony. We will gather in a little house off the grid in the woods of Wellington. We will watch the returns on a TV powered by a generator. We will fret and (please God) cheer and then all get tired and have to go to bed before the West Coast results come in.

My friend David, who is Canadian, sent me a note this morning, which ended with this wish:
Best to you, your people and your country.

I share this hope with the rest of you . . . my people, my country. As the Declaration of Independence reminds us, let us, as a nation, "mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor." In other words, please, Americans: don't screw this up.

5 comments:

Ruth said...

I am heading to the Polls when they open, then helping at the food sale that my church runs with all the proceeds going to the Out Reach activities in that town. I won't face the name-calling and won't be attending any parties, but will, God willing, be cheering in the morning.

Carlene said...

I am quite literally moved to tears...actual, hot, wet tears. Thank you. It's good to know that there are good people--like you and your "old-hippie" contingent--who still feel that this country is worth our consideration, that we are (and should be) working toward good, and not seeking to kick and stomp the sand-castles of our children into particulate and sodden oblivion.

Maureen said...

I went out at 7 this morning. Fortunately, despite the cold, weather is not an issue for anyone. The computers were balky where residents state their names and addresses, and the machine didn't want to take my hand-marked ballot. But, finally, all went well. Living in Northern Virginia, where I am, is like living in a separate state; it's solidly Democrat. The Clinton/Kaine signs pointed all the way to the school where voting took place. Not a one for the person whose name I won't write.

Mr Hill said...

We're too nervous to stand by while results trickle in, so we're going to the movies until late. Might turn into a new tradition.

Ruth said...

we are presently watching The Muppets Season One and Kung Fu episode 3 & 4