The Curious Case of Russia

Note: A poem written as a part of a project on the collapse of the USSR in a module on Economy, State and Society.

The century gone by—

Witnessed USSR be born and die.

19th Century was a temporal stage;

A historical drama became a rage.

*

The audience was captivated;

As Czar Nicholas II abdicated.

February to October was frantic;

Menshevik-Bolshevik rift was gigantic.

*

White and red, red and white;

Were the colours of the fight.

The split was mighty unpleasant;

Between the worker and peasant.

*

Proletariats were red;

They could hardly buy bread.

Working hours were long;

Bolsheviks said low wages were wrong.

*

Martov’s side was white;

He understood the peasants’ plight.

October 1917 was his downfall—

As Lenin emerged tall.

*

USSR as an industrial superpower;

Over capitalist economies, it’d tower.

Lenin’s plans were cut short;

Glorious dreams he had to abort.

*

Stalin was a cunning man;

Lenin was rightly not a fan.

Trotsky, the favoured successor;

Was trumped by Stalin, the aggressor.

*

Lenin died in 1924;

Stalin took control, amidst gore.

He did questionable deeds;

But for economic growth, he sowed seeds.

*

Actual figures under scrutiny;

He tamped down any mutiny.

Counter revolutionaries—shot, jailed, exiled;

Public trust was defiled.

*

Despotic rule, absolute censorship—

USSR was in his total grip.

Gulags are a blot on history;

At great cost, came his victory.

*

World War II was waged;

Many were enraged.

 An alliance with the West;

Would later create unrest.

*

The sun finally set;

On the colonists, they fret.

WWII was a game changer;

UN became incipient world’s ranger.

*

Democracy, co-operation, Fair Trade across border—

Became the New World Order.

Flurry of treaties and accords;

Would all go down in records.

*

Fledgling Europe would take flight;

With the Marshall Plan in sight.

No help to Germany!—said Russia;

And dampened American euphoria.

*

Restructuring European economy;

Gave rise to new dichotomy.

Two blocs—East and West;

Non-aligned were the rest.

*

Free Markets, espoused the States;

With Bipolarity, came endless debates.

Bastion of communism was USSR;

US-Russia relations turned sour.

*

Cold War was a period tense;

Diplomacy was only a pretence.

Absence of European goodwill;

Was christened ‘Iron Curtain’ by Churchill.

*

Mutually Assured Destruction;

Prevented outright wars in any direction.

Proxy wars became commonplace;

So did the Arms and Space Race.

*

Gorbachev was a harbinger of reform—

Restructuring and openness became the norm.

Perestroika and Glasnost criticized or lauded;

Nobel Peace Prize he was awarded.

*

New freedom brought about demise;

Of a leader very wise.

Soon after the USSR disintegrated;

And global turmoil somewhat abated.

 

©PriyaDua

Note: All content copyright of Priya Dua

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One thought on “The Curious Case of Russia

  1. It is an absolutely brilliant price of work Priya. The broken USSR’s history, weaved together so beautifully by yours truly. (Hehe….Sorry, I was trying to rhyme it but such talent however eludes the likes of me) Love it<3

    Like

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