Napoleon crossed the Nieper
And claimed innocence.
He took city after Russian city,
Protesting that Alexander started it all.
His gargantuan need to be right,
To be unanswered, unopposed,
Placed his picture in the hall of shame
Where dictators, despots, and petty bullies
Strut their short, fat egos,
Too deluded to fathom the great contempt
They have earned in the tomes of history,
Still believing the fundamental lie
They told the world and themselves,
That they are great and must be so
In order to be of any human worth whatsoever.
He reappears from time to time
Throughout the pages of humanity
To remind us all of the virus inside
Which, given too much power,
Like water germinating an evil seed,
Can turn any one of us
Into a monstrous, murderous wretch.
We, the armies of Russia, must drive him back
Again and again, vigilant and humble,
For the battle on the western steppe
Also rages inside us.
1. What do you have to do to prove your worth? How does that urge affect others?
2. Like Napoleon, what urge to power lurks inside you, and what does it take to bring it to life?
3. How do you fight against that “evil seed”? What causes you to win or lose that fight?