Once upon a Time in America ...
- Once upon a time there was a man who started a war when he had become the leader of his country. He did so to force an uncooperative neighbouring nation into negotiations about disputed territory and about land he intended to buy. He had hoped to keep the war short by acting quickly and vigorously. There were adversities he had not anticipated, though.
Once upon another time he found himself struggling for a way out of utter anxiousness. The project had not been started by himself, but he had become its central figure quite naturally. At its beginning none of those concerned had a clear conception of what it would involve. When it had been started, he had for some time been relatively free to move in any direction, but meanwhile the proceedings had greatly limited his options. Pushed from behind, pressed on every side, he was compelled to go ahead or perish. Ahead he went, yet painfully slowly.
At times he came near giving up hope for an end of his trouble, but courage came again and again. It was a solace to him that he could feel the connection with a being that was much greater than he and gave him all the strength he needed. He was not always conscious of it, but whenever he could be, his blind trust in its reliability was universal. All the same he went through fears and sufferings he had never known before with a dim notion that the greater being suffered with him. There was no way but enduring what happened.
While constantly in suspense he had got forced into patience. In the end only the momentum of the events around him made him escape the pressures which felt like threatening to crush him. Suddenly there was a breakthrough. Within short time deliverance came. The quick change of conditions confused him, all the more as he felt again gripped and forced into a direction he had not chosen on his own. It was painful. He had to take a deep breath and give a scream from the bottom of his heart.
Those around him gave sighs of relief. "It's a boy!" said the midwife.
James Knox Polk had just been born. It was the 2nd of November, 1795. And high noon.