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Chopped–March Madness Edition

The week ahead will see the first rounds of the March Madness 2013 Poetry Showdown at Ed Decaria’s blog Think Kid Think.

The format of March Madness competition, with each poet given a surprise ingredient (word) to inspire and use in their poem, reminded me of the Food Network show Chopped.

In Chopped the contestants are presented with a basket of odd ingredients which they must use in preparing their appetizer, entree or dessert. The rounds are timed and when the time is up the judges taste each contestant’s offering and offer compliments or criticism. With the contestants out of the room the judges decide on the most unsuccessful dish. Then the contestants re-enter the studio, stand before the judges, and the show’s host lifts the cover of the losing plate of food. The contestant who prepared that dish is chopped and leaves the competition.

Now imagine you’re one of the March Madness competitors in a segment of Chopped:


Chopped–March Madness Edition

I’ve opened my basket
pulled out what’s inside.
Oh, what can be done
with a bag of riptide?

I’ve scratched and I’ve scribbled
diced sauteed and whipped
those rhymes and those rhythms
till tide is well lipped.

I’ve plated it nicely
in stanzas and lines
garnished with a title
it’s looking divine.

Just in time I am done.
Three, two, one–I must stop.
Now it’s on to the judges
for who lands on top.

I watch as the connoisseurs
sample my dish.
One says, “This is buttery
sweet and delish.”

Another judge grimaces
“I say, I wish
it wasn’t half raw
and tasting like fish.

The rhyme scheme is off
I feel grits when I swish
the words in my mouth
and they come out mash-mish.”

They sample the others
are equally tough
I do hope my buttery
riptide‘s enough!

We stand for the verdict
the cover is popped
on my darling riptide.
I have been chopped.

© 2013 Violet Nesdoly

poetry+friday+button+-+fulllThis post is part of Poetry Friday, hosted today by Heidi Mordhorst at My Juicy Little Universe

11 thoughts on “Chopped–March Madness Edition”

  1. I completely understand how #MMPoetry2013 feels like ‘Chopped’ – ever since I started watching that show a fe years ago, I alsways feel like i have to do EVERYTHING in less than 20 minutes! Thanks for sharing, Violet!


    1. Thanks Matt! All the best as you compete in Ed’s #MMPoetry2013! Those 20-minute pressure cookers you’ve sujected yourself to will no doubt stand you in good stead in this competition.


  2. Violet, so creative!!

    I was so hopeful here:
    I’ve plated it nicely
    in stanzas and lines
    garnished with a title
    it’s looking divine.

    But then my hopes were dashed:
    The rhyme scheme is off
    I feel grits when I swish
    the words in my mouth
    and they come out mash-mish.

    Arg! Maybe next time…


    1. Thank you, Jama! Fortunately I’m not in Ed’s tournament… didn’t even audition. Frankly I don’t know if I could bear the tension! Good luck to all who are competing though. I know many of them… it will be hard to vote.


  3. Poetry and Chopped – love the connection. Fun poem! I look forward to reading the poems when the competition begins and am glad I did not throw my hat in the ring. Looks WAY too stressful! =)


  4. I’ve never seen chopped but I can picture it and your poem is laced with humor, it’s wonderful!


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