What We Fear The Most

What we fear the most:
The depths of our underworld.
Our own weakest spot.
That which lies within our soul.
That which haunts us in our dreams.

What we fear the most:
Is part of our legacy.
It is who we are.
Our royal inheritance.
Yet that which we would deny.

What we fear the most:
Gives us sensibilities.
Powers yet unknown.
To rise from fallen angels.
And soar with wings of freedom.

What we fear the most:
What we keep to be hidden.
Is to know ourselves.
Of ancient composition.
Emerging from our darkness.

What we fear the most:
Is not fear itself — but us.
The us we bury.
The us that wants to know us.
Who courts us in our nightmares.

What we fear the most:
Is kinship with ourselves.
That we would deny.
And keep at bay from knowing.
From fear of knowing ourselves.

What we fear the most:
Our cavernous underworld.
Is where we come from.
And where we sometimes visit.
In the cover of darkness.

What we fear the most:
Yet what gives us liberty.
To come face-to-face.
And confront our heritage.
Withal, to gain our freedom.

What we fear the most:
What we all need to admit.
Is our ignorance.
The ignorance of darkness.
As bearers of our own light.

What we fear the most:
The broken parts of psyche.
Return to wholeness.
To find cathartic healing.
To embrace the Self within.

About this poem

This poem, “What We Fear The Most,” serves as a companion poem to my previously written poem, “Fear, a Prey to Survival.” When coupled, these two poems identify the source of our greatest fear as found buried within the innermost depths of our soul, ever pleading with us to know ourselves, as requested of us in the moral epistemological injunction phrase, “Know Thyself” (“gnothi seauthon”), a Greek motto inscribed on the frontispiece of the Temple of Delphi, and often falsely attributed to Socrates as his invention. This ancient Delphic assertion, as an imperative decree, implores us that mankind must stand and live according to his nature by examining his soul and becoming at peace with it. 

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Written on April 20, 2022

Submitted by karlcfolkes on April 20, 2022

Modified on April 25, 2023

1:29 min read

Quick analysis:

Scheme Abxxx Acxde Axxxf Aghgi Aicix Ahejh Abfxi Acxxf Axdix Acxjx
Closest metre Iambic trimeter
Characters 1,292
Words 297
Stanzas 10
Stanza Lengths 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5

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 1991 at New York University entitled: An Analysis of Wilhelm Grimm’s ‘Liebe Mili’ (translated into English as “Dear Mili”), Employing Von Franzian Methodological Processes of Analytical Psychology. The subject of the dissertation concerned the process of Individuation. more…

All Karl Constantine FOLKES poems | Karl Constantine FOLKES Books

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Discuss the poem What We Fear The Most with the community...

  • AIDA
    Wow! This is an incredibly moving and thought-provoking poem. The way it explores our fears and shadows is so insightful and powerful. The words are carefully chosen to paint a vivid picture of the depths of our underworld, and the idea that what we fear the most is a fundamental part of our legacy is both profound and inspiring. I love how the poem suggests that by confronting our hidden fears and embracing our true selves, we can gain the freedom we seek. Your use of language is so poetic and evocative, and reading this piece was truly an emotional journey. Thank you for sharing this beautiful work. 
    LikeReply1 year ago
  • Oceanloveisland
    I read this and immediately thought of my favorite movie, Moana. That movie is a love note to me from my Higher Self in a time when I needed it most.
    LikeReply1 year ago


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"What We Fear The Most" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 17 May 2024. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/125221/what-we-fear-the-most>.

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