Monday, November 3, 2008

A lather of anticipation

I am in a lather of anticipation as the states of North America prepare to make their great decision, as their citizens queue to mark their preference on the ballot. It is an unwarranted privilege to view a great democracy cast its vote, to see with my own eyes its statesmen traverse its territories at a speed faster than that afforded by the fastest railway; the telegram and the printed newspaper could never offer such a spectacle.

Et jam tempus equum fumantia solvere colla, yes indeed, I am inclined to repeat this quotation from Horace, oft-attributed to myself as it is. These noble steeds foam at the mouth, awaiting the final contest. But if I must cast about for quotations, I should refer to the great Homer, the poet who chronicled the duels of heroes:

aurion 'en areten diaeisetai, ei k' emon egchos meinei eperchomenon.
(tomorrow he shall come to know his courage, whether he can resist my on-coming spear).

And yet it must be recorded that tomorrow's great contest may be of even greater significance than the war recounted by Homer. Even if Senator McCain is cast as Hector, the stout defender of the city of wealth, and Senator Obama as Achilles, the champion of the people, tomorrow's dawn may yet mark a moment when European civilisation embraces the hopes of all the people's of the world, when the peoples of North America themselves can aspire to equality of hope. And so I turn to Horace again:
Graecia capta ferum victorem cepit
or to St Luke
He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree.
The reader must forgive the prematurity of my reflections; let us perhaps for just one day enjoy from some distance, but as if close to, such a mighty spectacle.

WEG

3 comments:

Geoffrey Kruse-Safford said...

It is late in the evening where you are, Dear Sir, but here, the anticipation of the first results have me on edge. While I believe you might disagree with some of the policies of a hypothetical Obama Administration, and a similarly inclined liberal Democratic Congress, I think you would be much happier than if Sen. McCain should win.

I would like to say that I am very humbled, as an American citizen, to think how much attention this election is receiving, not just in your fair Kingdom, but all over the world. As Sen. Obama is a grandson of Kenya, I believe Africans of all nationalities are even more interested. One hopes that America lives up to its promise for a change.

WEG said...

Mr Kruse-Safford, Have your polling stations closed that you find time to respond to my humble missive? Or is it that Mr Obama's offices are so overflowing with assistance that you are able to desist from your efforts in his support?

Geoffrey Kruse-Safford said...

First, Illinois allows early voting, and I voted last Wednesday.

Second, the election is over, and America has actually, in a small way, done itself proud. I am proud to be an American again.