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Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Boris...the spider

As the New York times says in its take on Yeltsin and his era,

No one recognized more than he how far short he fell of his goal. In his resignation speech, he told the Russian people: “I ask forgiveness for not justifying some hopes of those people who believed that at one stroke, in one spurt, we could leap from the gray, stagnant, totalitarian past into the light, rich, civilized future.”

At the end, he was a man worn down. “I feel like a runner who has just completed a supermarathon of 40,000 kilometers,” he wrote in his memoir. “I gave it my all. I put my whole heart and soul into running my presidential marathon. I honestly went the distance. If I have to justify anything, here is what I will say: If you think you can do it better, just try. Run those 40,000 kilometers. Try to do it faster, better, more elegantly, or more easily. Because I did it.”


In an era of manufactured political leaders, Yeltsin was the last of the old school politico's. Someone who could orate, who could mingle, who could get drunk, who could shake a leg, who would use the local transport, who would remember what it meant to be poor and disenfranchised and who would get angry at the state of things around him. Power corrupts and Yeltsin too left the stage to polite applause and muttered whispers, but for a brief moment in time, he was the man who dared raise his voice and take a hammer to the machine-state.

Perhaps it would have been better if he had been a spider, able to weave his web and hang by a thread, play the parlour games and tread lightly on the ground...
Still we must judge a man by his actions in his youth and middle age, not in his dotage. For those who remember, Boris was not a spider, but a bear of a man, poking his nose where it wasnt appreciated, shoving his way into places where he wasnt welcome and forever ready to stand up and climb on tanks and talk to the people directly.

Look, he's crawling up my wall
Black and hairy, very small
Now he's up above my head
Hanging by a little thread

Boris the spider
Boris the spider

Now he's dropped on to the floor
Heading for the bedroom door
Maybe he's as scared as me
Where's he gone now, I can't see

Boris the spider
Boris the spider

Creepy, crawly
Creepy, crawly
Creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly
Creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly
Creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly
Creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly

There he is wrapped in a ball
Doesn't seem to move at all
Perhaps he's dead, I'll just make sure
Pick this book up off the floor

Boris the spider
Boris the spider

Creepy, crawly
Creepy, crawly
Creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly
Creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly
Creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly
Creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly

He's come to a sticky end
Don't think he will ever mend
Never more will he crawl 'round
He's embedded in the ground

Boris the spider
Boris the spider

3 comments:

sonia said...

Ultimately, Yeltsin was a good guy. But maybe that's not what Russia needed in the 1990's...

Guru-tech said...

Very nice poem!!

saurabh said...

yar the only problem i see was that boris had too much shit to clean up for a single man.

and he wasn`t the kinds who manage to look good even after completely changing the things.

i admire him!

dictatorship is better than anarchy
:D

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