Dotting ‘i’s and Crossing ‘t’s: Pedantry Personified – by Vince Borg


He rolls his eyes and tongues his tease,
Our watchful pedant who’s ill at ease
When an aitch is dropped or a guttural stop
Mushes ‘p’s and ‘q’s to a verbal slop.

He abhors the missing apostrophe,
‘Tut-tut’s the grocers who give one free.
Recoils when he types a web domain
With no capital letters…it’s not the same.

He turns his head when he hears the rustle
Of a toffee wrap as the Macbeths tussle.
He sets the tone of his theatre box
Finetunes disgust with disdaining looks.

The pedant picks paper from pavement and path.
Alludes to alliterates, relishes wrath.
He doesn’t avoid a challenging scene
Where a less picky person might not intervene.

The pedant in science never relents.
He spots a smudge that changes events.
Hears white noise on a TV set,
Proposes theories, while hedging his bet.

The pedant in law would have us believe
That truth is his pigeon, like tricks up his sleeve.
He makes a fine point with case history of old,
Advocates mildly that lead’s really gold.

The pedant, of course, may well be a she,
Who welcomes pedantic precision with glee.
Most pedants enduring love’s tortuous embrace
Will travel the earth for their loves, face to face.

They’ll sail away for a year and a day,
As they strive for clear meaning in word, work and play.
They have found their true love, these charmed OCDs,
Through the doting of eyes and the crossing of seas.




Vince is a retired Maths teacher. His family has lived in North Leeds and enjoyed the Yorkshire countryside for over 40 years. He performed in open-mic at Wicked Words in Seven Arts, Chapel Allerton, for many years, and produced an unpublished anthology Running Down the Up One in 2012.

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