Catherine II the Great

Catherine called the Great

Serious circumstances, but trying to play the dealt roles as usual. As tourists before the majestic portrait of Catherine II the Great, Tsarin of all Russia. The Winter Palace, St. Petersburg.

[. . .]
CATHERINE: I need a lover so vast as this Empire
Who would take me as I am giving throughout fully —
Who would be a slave and a ruler incarnation —
And would replace hares and deers of my hunts

And who would understand in the same way as I do
This foolish court of roles already dealt —
And among all these bowed heads —
Would give me pleasure, pleasure or pain!

CHOIR: Stop Catherine!
The crown of the Tsars —
A dream, a dream like this
can take it off, off your head !

CATHERINE: Yes, I know, I know it myself !
If I had ever found such a lover —
I’d have ordered to behead him, yes,
I’d have ordered to cut his head off !!!

[My humble free translation of the final part of Jacek Kaczmarski‘s song, a kind of a courtly minuet, but for a rocky acoustic guitar, Владимир Высоцкий style.]

[…] A lover so vast as this Empire […] an incarnation of a slave and a ruler… Maybe the first of them was Stanisław August Poniatowski, the last king of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, elected by the nobles mainly due to the presence of her soldiers on the election field. But he was just one of them all in a row — someone she used to know, a long time before she got bored of that insincere crowd of bowed heads. The other most prominent to share the bed with the tsarin of all Russia: Grigory Orlov, and Grigory Potemkin. Admitted, the Lady had a taste.