An Ode to Arcane Words

Day 3 National Poetry Writing Month 2016

Prelude: Hear, hear, those who have gather here

Know that it is a shame that we don’t

use these wonderful forgotten words,

but we really should.  


Gather around children, today I am

going to tell you a story about an pismire,

who is trying to become the world’s

most puissant person.

Let’s call him Drumpf.


He hails from septentrional city of Gotham

and is extremely contumelious.  


His excogigate is to create galimaufry

that confuse those in the media.  His

modus operandi is to twattle on tweeter

to destroy his opponents with insults and

massive putdowns.  With cozen he whispers

sweet-nothings into his supporters and whips

them up into sanguinolent in his rallies, where

they are ready to pizzle their opponents.


Drumpf has created such a cattywampus

within his druxy tribe and made tribal elites

truly namby-pamby.


Oh they tried so hard to oppugn him

but they are largely flailing, peenging

and pronking like thompson’s gazelles.

The tribal elites are trying to avaunt the usurper

but they have been largely bootless and have

been reduced to mere criticasters.


Meanwhile Drumpf, ever the sciolist and an acrasian

is winning hearts and minds of the average Joe.

He may be altiloquent, but the people are lapping

up his every word.  He may just napoo,

yaff and honeyfuggle his way to victory.



Arcane Word List:

Pismire – an ant

Puissant – having great power or influence

Septentrional – of the north

Contumelious – (of behavior) scornful and insulting; insolent

ExcogigateTo plan, plot or devise

Galimaufry – A jumble or confused medley of things

Twattle – To gossip; talk idly and too much

Cozen – To swindle by artful deception

Sanguinolent – Tinged with blood, or with a passion for bloodshed

Pizzle – To beat someone with a dried bull’s penis

Cattywampus – In disarray or disorder; askew

Druxy – Something which looks good on the outside, but is actually rotten inside

Namby-pamby – Of a person, weak, indecisive

Oppugn – To oppose

Peenging – To complain in a whiny voice

Pronking – A behavior of quadrupeds, particularly gazelles, in which all four legs are used to push off the ground at once

Avaunt – Go away; leave with haste

Bootless – (of a task or undertaking) ineffectual; useless

Criticasters – A minor or incompetent critc

Sciolist – A person who opines on subjects of which one has only superficial knowledge

Acrasia – a lack of self-control or the state of acting against one’s better judgement

Altiloquent – Pompous, high sounding, or pretentious in speech

Napoo – To finish; to put an end to; to kill

Yaff – to bark; yelp, to bark like a snarling dog

Honeyfuggle – To wheedle or swindle


Note: Today’s NaPoWriMo prompt was to write a fan letter.  Mixed a whole bunch of arcane words and more commentary on 2016 campaign.


Portrait of the Nation, Circa 2016

statute of liberty nyc 2005 aashish vaidya

“Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand”

Auntie Thrilla from Wasilla. She will greet you

With twitchy eyes and not so open arms.

She’ll say:

Heh, ancient lands, with your storied pomp,

We can no longer take

“your tired, your poor, your huddled masses,”

For you’re not the right size, the shape, or color

Your eyes are not the steely blue of the sky

Your hair, not the golden rays of the sun

You don’t speak in the right tongue

You don’t say Yahweh as we do.


She’ll say:

We can’t greet you little children with

“gift baskets of teddy bears and soccer balls”

For you might grow up to be drug peddlers,

rapists, terrorists and killers.  


Auntie Thrilla from Wasilla will say:

Ancient lands keep your wretched, stinking

refuse on your own teeming shores,

Don’t send us your homeless, we got no place for them,

You may be “yearning to breathe free”,

but our air doesn’t have enough free oxygen

for you and your kin.


Notes: Today’s NaPoWriMo prompt was to write a poem that takes the form of a family portrait.  I came across a news story about 2016 election campaign.  So then I expanded the frame from an immediate family to a wider national  portrait.


News story on 2016 election campaign

Emma Lazarus, The New Colossus