Enter the dark privacy of a cubicle

sit on waxed wood and meditate

on your many sins.

A trefoil-patterned screen snicks open.

In the gloom, a perforated silhouette

turns toward you,

murmurs “Yes my child”.

You peer through

dim light, mumble –

“Bless me Father, for I have sinned”.

Recount your litany of transgressions

against your mother, father. sister, brother, best friend,

a neighbour, the whole world.

Small sins and large;

it doesn’t matter in what order you list them.

Remember to confess

all you have forgotten and neglected.

These wrongdoings need to be

turned up from under that dark rock, your soul.

Exposed to the light of scrutiny

your guilty secrets crawl out

and are washed away

in the waters of forgiveness.

“Ego te absolvo”- intones the priest.

For penance he demands you

circuit the Stations of the Cross,

at least three times.

You dutifully do your laps

around the church

as prescribed,

dip your hand in Holy Water,

make the Sign of the Cross,


and push out into bright sunlight

ready to sin again.

G M, April 18, 2005

2 Responses to “Absolution”

  1. Dejan Says:

    You made me ponder here over my own life. And I will dare to say that if I had not read the novel Quo Vadis by Henryk Sienkiewicz (Nobel prize winner) I would have never really felt the power of forgiveness, by thinking on my own.

    It is because the other books may speak about forgiveness, but this one embodies consciousness of forgiveness.

  2. onemoreoption Says:


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