After weeks of what I think is called the autumn series (rugby) a really good rugby film was shown tonight on TV – Invictus. I’ve watched it many times and its message of endurance and courage still inspires me. Mandela played so well by Morgan Freeman and SA Rugby team captain François Pienaar played by Matt Damon. Did some googling and was very impressed by Pienaar’s account of the time, especially of the 1995 World Cup and his memories of Mandela. Most memorable was the poem “Invictus” which Mandela shared with Pinaar and its inspiration to take control of what is within yourself and show fortitude in the face of adversity. Invictus” is a short Victorian poem by the English poet William Ernest Henley. It was written in 1875 and published in 1888
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 bludgeoning 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.