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Lest We Forget



Lest we forget
Lest we seek not to remember
The scourge of slavery
Haunting, taunting, everywhere
Like bold demons of the underworld
Risen from cavernous dwellings
Let us have our consciences pricked.

Lest we forget
All those laws and all those statutes
Etched now sadly with
A past that’s ever present
Let us own familial demons
Projected onto dark faces
Those with soulful stares that haunt us.

Lest we forget
Lest we might fail to remember
The scourge of slavery
Images of oppression
By legislative seal and power
Enslaving with racial epithets
Let us break those seals of hatred.

Lest we forget
Lest we might think that we have changed
With “freedom” for all
While keeping impositions
For race, for class, for color, and creed
Know we divide and we conquer
In the name of democracy.

Lest we forget
Lest we maintain our pretensions
Jekyll masking Hyde
Masking what we would deny
The darkness of our souls projected
Onto those we would still hinder
Let us embrace wounded spirits.

About this poem

In the 21st Century, the scourge of the aftermath of the Trans-Atlantic slave trade of the 17th and 18th centuries in the Americas remains an ever clear and present danger to the charge of democracy in the Americas and worldwide; and to the pursuit of freedom, Justice and equity for all. This poem invites all of us, as global citizens, to continue to participate in the universal goal to eradicate the stench of a past history lurking in every corner of the world, and to bring all of humanity into wholesome healing. This unrhymed seven-line, five-stanza poem, is written in free style with a sustaining 5-8-5-7-9-8-8 lyrical measure throughout the entire composition. 

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Written on June 30, 2022

Submitted by karlcfolkes on June 30, 2022

Modified by karlcfolkes

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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

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1 Comment
  • teril
    Because of people like you and poems like yours, we will not forget.
    LikeReplyReport27 days ago

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"Lest We Forget" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2022. Web. 3 Dec. 2022. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/130912/lest-we-forget>.

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