“A trail of human misery and degradation”
Derives from a mid-16th century text from Old French
Illustrated best by the Inquisition and the Holocaust
But it conjures up a long history of human stench
While the odor lingers in slavery and segregation,
Reappearing, as I write, in modern gender deprivation.
See “The Last Days,” which does so clearly reveal
The merciless Nazi death camps as recent as 1945
With horror scenes of Auschwitz and Bergen-Belsen
Where thousands of abused prisoners were barely alive
When Russians and Allied troops liberated them
Showing depravity’s ability to sustain mayhem.
Degradation, man’s inhumanity to man, must be stated
As young girls and women are sold into sexual slavery
With no regard for the soul residing in their bodies
Forced to participate in the most unholy and unsavory
I believe the appetite for debauchery is never sated
Degradation of human beings continues unabated.
I weep, thinking about our blighted history of barbarism,
In America elderly Puritan woman were hanged as witches
In Africa where slaves were stolen away from their tribes
In Germany where little children were thrown into ditches
At times the world has slithered into abject bestialism
Degradation toward our fellowman is a bulging aneurism.
SECOND PLACE WINNER
written September 9, 2021
especially for "This or That, Vol 7" Poetry Contest
sponsored by Edward Ibeh
Copyright © L MILTON HANKINS | Year Posted 2021
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