Rate this poem:5.0 / 1 vote

We Must Face History

Facing history
of those defaced
in history.

Those ghettoed
by racial segregation,
wearing badges of dishonor
imposed upon them.

Those composed badges
decomposed in history
by logistics of mass murder.

Employed by those classed;
treated as Masters
in capitalist adventures
by imperialist impetus.

Encamping some as victims
of virulent mass murders,
of horrors unforgettable.

Who can quantify this malady of evil?
Who can measure its extent?
Who can estimate, assess the weight?
Who can stare blindly and deny?

Hyper-intense is the pain
that by fear is perpetuated
and by hatred sustained.

Oh, the madness
and the bitterness.
Oh, the everlasting sadness
to be labeled as “The Other:”

Jews, blacks, colored, “queers,”
Africans, Armenians…
Serbs and “wetbacks” — Native Americans.

“Mischlinge” breeds of poisoned multi stripes.
Multi breeds ignominiously ranked.
All because of various fears;
displaced, defaced, replaced.

Perceived as social miscreants.
The lumpen proletariat class;
Society’s human underclass.

Devoid of any human consciousness.
Oppressed, suppressed, depressed
by systemic human justification
as the scum of the earth.

We must face history
of those defaced in history.
We must must defeat the common enemy.

We must face history
of those defaced in history.
We must defeat the common enemy
that is buried deep within the human soul.

About this poem

Antisemitism, racism, sexism, authoritarianism, anarchism, amoralism and other evil ideological isms are the maladies that historically plague human societies. The source of this pervasive illness lies buried in the human psyche and is a flaw of human nature that urgently begs for healing.

Font size:
Collection  PDF     

Written on January 19, 2022

Submitted by karlcfolkes on January 17, 2022

Modified on May 02, 2023

1:16 min read

Quick analysis:

Scheme aba bcdx xad xeef xeg gxxx xxx fffd hii xxhb xjj fxcx AAa AAax
Closest metre Iambic tetrameter
Characters 1,391
Words 256
Stanzas 14
Stanza Lengths 3, 4, 3, 4, 3, 4, 3, 4, 3, 4, 3, 4, 3, 4

Karl Constantine FOLKES

Retired educator of Jamaican ancestry with a lifelong interest in composing poetry dealing particularly with the metaphysics of self-reflection; completed a dissertation in Children’s Literature in 1995 at New York University entitled: An Analysis of Wilhelm Grimm’s “Dear Mili” Employing Von Franzian Methodological Processes. The subject of the dissertation concerned the process of Individuation. more…

All Karl Constantine FOLKES poems | Karl Constantine FOLKES Books

39 fans

Discuss the poem "We Must Face History" with the community...

  • Soulwriter
    Absolutely - a lot of ugliness in the world to combat with love, acceptance and peace
    LikeReply1 year ago
  • Dougla$Irishman
    Is life that complicated ? Maybe for the intellects but for the ordinary family man, love conquers all and living for others is a close second ! However your poem makes us to think beyond our thoughts ! To be, or not to be that is the question ! 
    LikeReply1 year ago


Find a translation for this poem in other languages:

Select another language:

  • - Select -
  • 简体中文 (Chinese - Simplified)
  • 繁體中文 (Chinese - Traditional)
  • Español (Spanish)
  • Esperanto (Esperanto)
  • 日本語 (Japanese)
  • Português (Portuguese)
  • Deutsch (German)
  • العربية (Arabic)
  • Français (French)
  • Русский (Russian)
  • ಕನ್ನಡ (Kannada)
  • 한국어 (Korean)
  • עברית (Hebrew)
  • Gaeilge (Irish)
  • Українська (Ukrainian)
  • اردو (Urdu)
  • Magyar (Hungarian)
  • मानक हिन्दी (Hindi)
  • Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Italiano (Italian)
  • தமிழ் (Tamil)
  • Türkçe (Turkish)
  • తెలుగు (Telugu)
  • ภาษาไทย (Thai)
  • Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)
  • Čeština (Czech)
  • Polski (Polish)
  • Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Românește (Romanian)
  • Nederlands (Dutch)
  • Ελληνικά (Greek)
  • Latinum (Latin)
  • Svenska (Swedish)
  • Dansk (Danish)
  • Suomi (Finnish)
  • فارسی (Persian)
  • ייִדיש (Yiddish)
  • հայերեն (Armenian)
  • Norsk (Norwegian)
  • English (English)


Use the citation below to add this poem to your bibliography:


"We Must Face History" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 2 Jun 2023. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/117915/we-must-face-history>.

Become a member!

Join our community of poets and poetry lovers to share your work and offer feedback and encouragement to writers all over the world!

June 2023

Poetry Contest

Join our monthly contest for an opportunity to win cash prizes and attain global acclaim for your talent.

Browse Poetry.com


Are you a poetry master?

The way the lines look on the page is known as ________.
  • A. Paragraph
  • B. Stanza
  • C. Line
  • D. Form