Statues - a Rhymeless Rant

Doggerel Dave

And they’ve really started to tumble down –

No, not talking here about Jack and Jill,

But statues commemorating Great Men;

Men with less than desirable CV’s.

     Now let me pose a question:

Statues of these men (and they are all men)

Who once in their day were considered great

Are for many now, just considered not -

Generals, Politicians one and all

Who once committed execrable crimes

Coincidentally? against dark skinned folks

Via slavery, extermination and its ilk.

      So destroy, remove from sight,

Then reverence in the form of a statue

No longer exists. Yes – but History

Is also lost and the World can forget…..

     It is thoughtless people in action here

(Not an unusual phenomenon)

Who must wish to destroy such memory

(From which few have ever learnt anyway –

But there’s hope). So a solution might be:

Secure to their usually ample base

In metal, a roll call of their acts

For all to see: Is that too much to ask?


  • Author: Doggerel Dave (Pseudonym) (Offline Offline)
  • Published: February 1st, 2023 05:55
  • Comment from author about the poem: I’m exhausted right now both with high humidity levels, but more importantly ‘voices prophesying war!’ So bugger it, let’s get it out there, without rhyme, which I cannot summon the energy to work on. Then by all means argue - I will respond….
  • Category: Unclassified
  • Views: 42
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  • arqios

    History was a major part of my studies and now all of that is being erased. For better or worse it is just being wiped out. Funny how thin texts and resources would be for those courses, lol. And a huge appendix of hoaxes and revisionist narrative. double lol.

    • Doggerel Dave

      Thanks Rik. Yes – constant pressure politically to reduce focus on the humanities (under which umbrella History has been conveniently placed) in favour of more ‘practical’ subjects which will equip students to participate in a profit producing workforce.

      • arqios

        ...and the natural query would be who profits and benefits from the produce and outcomes of these participant subjects...

      • Neville

        I'm with you all the way

        Change is the only constant in what should be a beautiful multihued world and whilst I acknowledge many of the wrongs committed against various groups of people throughout history & the numerous motivations behind such wrongs .. They did most surely happen and we must acknowledge that they happened & not try to destroy all evidence of them .. For what else, in years to come shall we use as a measure to determine how far we have moved forward and indeed, from which to learn ..

        I do not subscribe to the collective guilt that seems to grip so called civilised society ..
        If I do something wrong and later realise it, then I will surely apologise .. but I struggle to apologise for what my ancestors may or may not have done .. Like I have already said .. Change is probably the only constant .. customs, values and beliefs all change, as does culture and society itself .. rant over .. sleep tight you old dog .. 🙂

        • Dove


          • Doggerel Dave

            Cheers Nev – I actually slept very well.
            Agreed– I have absolutely no wish to apologise for the actions of past generations even as I witness such political statements.
            However, a historical perspective is necessary in cases (by no means exhaustive) of, say the US and Australia where invasion, dispossession extreme violence and resultant poverty and trauma have occurred. Today, First Nations peoples in Australia are jailed at proportionally much higher rates than the rest of the population, provided with insufficient inadequate housing….the list of injustices could go on…. America has the additional sin of slavery (profits from, racial violence) on its back.
            Acknowledgement but with, via a historical perspective, proper recompense is the only way to go.

          • sorenbarrett

            What I was taught i school I have found to be mythical, and one sided. History has many sides and each party portrays only their side. I would be for a plack commemorating a person with their accomplishments paired against their ill doing. Let the whole story be told.

            • Doggerel Dave

              I see where you are coming from, Soren. And I would be the first to agree that History is probably the most contestable of the social sciences. However some facts are incontrovertible and it is these that largely remain unacknowledged. The ‘accomplishments’ are what put the statue there in the first place.

            • orchidee

              Why,, what they done, them statues, to be torn down? Them blocks of stones.
              It's who they are statues of, of course.
              And pass a bit of that humidity UK-way! lol.

              • Doggerel Dave

                Gotta accept he heat as well, as a combo, orchi.

                • orchidee

                  'Tis the equivalent to our UK July weather now, in your part of the world!

                • 3 more comments

                • Dove

                  I agree, and even household products have changed because of the scrutiny. It was another time, we hope we are better than our ancestors. But history should not be erased or torn. We just need acknowledge the wrongs.

                  • Doggerel Dave

                    I think you are there with me, Dove. But we need first to make sure the history doesn’t get erased, (but not merely acknowledged), and then provide healing.

                  • Fay Slimm.

                    Your idea is the best Dave - put underneath the said statues the many atrocities these so-called heroes committed and let people learn and never again repeat their deeds.

                    • Doggerel Dave

                      Thanks Fay. Never again do this, but in possession of knowledge, as applicable to the victims today, do something about their situation.

                    • Bella Shepard

                      How brave of you to start this conversation dear friend. History is typically written by the victors, for better or worse. And how often it is skewed because we cannot bear shame. Here in the U.S. we have those who would rewrite history completely to salve their souls, and allay their fears. Funny how fear can drive us to do or say things that contradict reality, that we may not suffer guilt. A big part of my country's history is written in the blood of those who suffered slavery from its inception in 1619 to to emancipation in 1865. Slavery was necessary for the economic stability of the southern states and was worth starting a war to preserve. They also sought to preserve what they thought was the rightoutness of their cause by flying the confederate battle flag over state houses and erecting statues to those who lead the charge, which have only recently been taken down. My fervent hope is that history can be taught without bias, although sadly some heads of state, primarliy in the south, are passing laws to censor textbooks and dictate curriculum against the will of teachers. If only they had the foresight to see the very slippery slope they are inching towards. I think when honestly taught, without fear, history can enlighten and encourage thoughtful and meaningful conversations that allow people to arrive at conclusions that are genuine and productive for all. But then, we are only human. Although Galileo did win out in the end, maybe there's hope?

                      bversions to get at the truth, allowing people in the future to use reason and intelligence to choose wisely.

                      • Doggerel Dave

                        Bella, I want to give this lots of thought. While I'm doing so could you sort out what is happening at the bottom?................and maybe not cite bravery as a quality of mine....🙂

                        • Bella Shepard

                          Not quite sure how the two lines at the bottom got there. Could have been something I typed and thought I deleted. As for bravery, it comes in all forms and I think speaking freely is a very important one. You speak freely which is one of the things I love about you dear friend.

                        • 1 more comment

                        • 2781

                          For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the man's spirit within him? I wonder what future generations will think of this generation.

                          • Doggerel Dave

                            Don't quite understand what you are on about here, or why. This is a straightforward argument for the admission that some statues are offensive if they are to glorify the subjects' so called achievements without acknowledging the gross injustices they in many cases perpetuated. Question: are they better pulled down or left there with history added?
                            You are so way off point there, I really should not have bothered with a response at all.

                            • 2781

                              I suppose my suggestion was that the characters in the statues were heroes of their day. Regardless of what we may think of them today. No one really knows their motivations i.e.heart. we are quick to judge and condemn, but are we really any better? God knows. Every man will proclaim his own righteousness but God searches the heart. I am probably why off again, excuse my ignorance. Cheers

                            • 5 more comments

                            • mvvenkataraman

                              The format of the poem itself is damn ugly,
                              The mind of the poet is in a confused state,
                              He writes utter nonsense to feel proud,
                              Reading his poem will spoil the brain,
                              Those who write good poem will blunder,
                              If they happen to read his senseless poems,
                              He must first join PreKg in poetry
                              And learn gradually to write poems,
                              The license to write poems is free,
                              So, such foolish poets start writing,
                              And imagine themselves to be geniuses,
                              What a chaos and disorder in his ideas???

                              • Doggerel Dave


                              • Iva Hotko

                                History is an interesting word and although people would like it to be black and white it's actually an endless shade of gray.
                                History form whose point of view?
                                I lived through the war in my country, and although I was a child things stuck with me. There are many truths about the things that happened in that war but what do the history books say and the media for that matter as well? What ever fits the frame at hand, to be honest. It was always like that, history servers those in power to use it and change it as they see fit. Let's not forget that some still live in one version of their history.

                                • Doggerel Dave

                                  It should be blindingly obvious that really I’m no ‘Poet’ in the sense most people use the term. I utilize the medium of rhyming verse to put forward ideas and sometimes entertain. I didn’t think you would read more than one of mine…..
                                  One big theme I tried (it gained little currency here) was that in order to understand a conflict (and hopefully avoid the same errors again – some hopes!) it was essential to study the history around the causes. History however is possibly the most contestable of the social sciences. That does not mean the effort should not be made. Nor make that an excuse for not seriously engaging with those who put forward their views for their own nefarious purposes.
                                  I too was born in war – it too left an indelible mark.

                                  • Iva Hotko

                                    I like the way you write and open social issues people don't like to talk about. Poetry is not only about love and despair it's much more complex then that, and every one has their own way of wording their thoughts/ emotions.
                                    Regarding history it always sadness me, and it did from very young age, that we learned nothing from history but how more efficiently kill one another. I kept asking myself why are we so ignorant and make the same mistakes over and over again? And then I realized it's all about power and the money. Human lives are not important just profits. So, can we change our ways while the greed is ruling the world? I'm not so hopeful on that ☹️

                                  • 7 more comments

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