THE KING’S WAR

Even those who know little of chess understand that it is a game of war. That to play includes moves and strategies, all towards an ultimate goal of killing the king.

The king is the most ironic part of the game. The most sought, yet the most inadequate piece on the board. He stands tall in his place as war goes. He seemingly overlooks all of it. Yet he enjpys being in one place, defended by all. It is only once he has lost everything that he runs.

He runs until the time is up. He runs as the warriors of his nemesis chase him, point their arrows at him. Mocking him as they watch him flee. They allow him sixteen moves before they would finally surround him. Then it is over.

The king is the master of all, but the queen is stronger than he is. The movements of the king should only take a step at a time. Otherwise, he would be cheating. The queen on the other hand, can storm troopers from one end to another. Sometimes you would almost consider her the most important piece of all. To lose your queen often means to lose the game as well.

For a king to be murdered he must first be immobilized. We call it checkmate, which means, literally, “the king is dead.”

Sometimes, though senseless, the war does not end in the kings murder. This they call a draw. It is at this point that the king re-builds his army, marries a queen. and trains his cavalry. And back to war he goes.


Man is the only animal that deals in that atrocity of atrocities, War. He is the only one that gathers his brethren about him and goes forth in cold blood and calm pulse to exterminate his kind. He is the only animal that for sordid wages will march out… and help to slaughter strangers of his own species who have done him no harm and with whom he has no quarrel…. And in the intervals between campaigns he washes the blood off his hands and works for “the universal brotherhood of man” – with his mouth.
Mark Twain

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