Archive for the Me Category

Invictus vs. Humilis

Oct 23rd, 2008 Posted in Faith, Me, Men's Ministry | no comment »


Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find me, unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate;
I am the captain of my soul.

-William Ernest Henley (British Poet, 1875)

Ah yes, the poem that Timothy McVeigh uttered as the execution drugs began flowing into his veins. Americans love this poem. Men love this poem. We grunt like Tim the Toolman Taylor at the dark overtones and the protagonists unquenchable spirit. We are gripped with emotion at the last two lines, I am the master of my fate; I am the captain of my soul. “Invictus”, unconquered! Deep emotion, passion, and strength; good stuff.

Small problem though, it isn’t true.

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