Ed’s Top Ten Favorite March Madness Poetry 2013 Poems: #5

We are now just five days away from the start of the March Madness Poetry 2014 tournament! Today I reveal #5 on my list of Top Ten Favorite Poems of #MMPoetry 2013. It is among the most memorableindelibleunforgettablelastingwellingrainedbellringingstickwithyou poems of the entire event:

Vocabulary Test
By Dave Crawley

1. given to using long words.
2. (of a word) containing many syllables.


Forgive me for waxing sesquipedalian,
using long words, irretrievably alien.
Words with an etymological source
(polysyllabically speaking, of course).

But you, with temerity, dare juxtapose
my sluggardly speech with my ponderous prose!
Your effrontery’s neither polite, nor propitious.
To call you my friend would appear suppositious.

You say I’m recalcitrant? Stubborn? Contrarian?
Words of disparagement make me lugubrious,
fighting a syndrome that’s hardly salubrious.

Searching a cure for this grim tribulation,
I found a young doctor who promised cessation.
Shaking his head, he said, “This is no frolic.
You are a sesquipedaliaholic!”

He plied me with pills for the span of a week,
then said, “You are cured! I can prove it. Now speak!”
Monosyllabic, I started to talk:
“See Spot run. Puff has fun. See Dick and Jane walk.”

Doc covered his ears as he fell to his knees.
“The cure is much worse,” he cried, “than the disease!”
His expostulation caused me to walk out.
I still am long-winded, but cured of all doubt.

I no longer care if you choose to make sport of it.
That is the long (but never the short) of it.


Nice. Job. Dave. Click. Here. To. See. This. Poem. As. It. Appeared. In. Last. Year’s. Event.

Like it? Share it!

Like me? Subscribe to TKT!

  • Damon Dean

    I remember that and laughing all the way through! Great use of the prompt.

  • Matt Forrest

    I remember it, too! Love it.

  • Janet F.

    Love it even more this time around! Wish these were in books, Ed and all! Really, truly, I do.

  • DomD

    Not only did Dave win the trophy of the same name, but I would award him with another honor of having created the 2013 version of the word “thinkier” with his WOTY-worthy monster, “sesquipedaliaholic”. Someone needs to get the word out to Oxford University Press (pun definitely intended).

  • Robyn Hood Black

    This was a delicious wordy mouthful! Looking forward to reading the fun this year, even if from a stack of (getting emptier, really) moving boxes… Robyn Hood Black

  • deborahhwilliams

    Absolute excellence! Taking a tough word and going above and beyond!

  • Catherine Johnson


  • Jeanne Poland

    I’m not laughing.
    I keep rising from the chair to get the thesaurus, the rhyming dictionary, and the metronome. And to think that Dave Crawley had a deadline for his production. Does that mean he fine-tunes the vocabulary pool every day?

  • Buffy Silverman

    I was (and still am) amazed that Dave pulled this off. My only hope is that Ed does not decide to use this poem as a source of words for this year’s competition!

  • BJ Lee

    hahaha! Great to read it again!

  • Dave Crawley

    I usually use a thesaurus when writing a poem, but this time I had to turn to the dictionary. I confess I had never heard this word before. Now, of course, I slip it into conversation at every opportunity…

  • Liana Mahoney

    I think I have a porcupine in my mouth! Love this!