Image used with kind permission from Robin Stone
That is a line from a poem by acclaimed novelist Elinor Lipman (Then She Found Me, The Inn at Lake Devine). She wrote it for a Writers for Obama fundraiser that was held in Northampton, Massachusetts on September 21, 2008. "There were multiple writers involved and the plan was for all of us to write something original to read at the event," says Ms. Lipman, whose ninth novel, The Family Man, will be published in May 2009.
From the beginning of her involvement with the fundraiser, she knew she would write about Mrs. O. "I love that she wears dresses. She has such fun with her wardrobe." As did Ms. Lipman in her witty poetic romp through Mrs. O's sartorial high moments in the campaign and anticipation of the upcoming Inaugural Night. We appreciate that Ms. Lipman felt this would be the perfect place for her poem to be published. It seems fitting; after all, we do like to talk about clothes.
Michelle, As Well by Elinor Lipman
I write this poem on matters slight By which I mean, Inaugural Night. My shallow values hence exposed, But someone's got to mention clothes. I'll take you back as I digress To Iowa and that black dress. A silver belt around her waist Opponent's pantsuits in disgrace. I viewed her garb and then I knew She won't wear suits in royal blue. Man-tailored jackets grow on trees, And no more rhinestone flag pins, please. She won't-nor will her dazzling girls- Be seen in Barbara's two-strand pearls. I love her plastic boutonnieres We won't see Reagan-red for years. The purple sleeveless dress: bravado That V-neck teal in Colorado? The fierce print at Invesco Field? A Denver high, her shoes low-heeled. The black and white seen on The View? Back-ordered till the year is new. Still, anchor people have to dwell More on McCain than on Michelle. But we who live by Project Runway Crave panache inside the Beltway. Support the arts (couture is one!) A modern Jackie will be fun. Michelle, our belle, icon long-sought A ticket back to Camelot. And better still, her strengths are mental, The Best Dressed list is accidental. Come January, let us pray We hail Inauguration Day. A snowy night, D.C. ablaze The end of fashion's long malaise. Her man, their waltz, a splendid gown A masterpiece lights up the town. Chiffon or silk in black or white, Barack in tails...oh what a sight!