b&w photo for the Confessional

The Confessional

 

 

Waiting in line for my turn

in Saturday confession,

Still young enough

To not conceive of why the young woman in the last pew

sobbed,

so piteously.

I stared and stared

at her hunched figure, shoulders heaving,

her quiet rasps obliterating the stillness.

 

By the time I entered

The dark pocket of the confessional

My curiosity could not be contained,

And even before Father Blackwell

had slid open the wooden panel between us,

I blurted it out, brazen.

Why is that lady so sad, Father?

His response was clipped, dismissive.

She has not been forgiven.

More importantly, he demanded,

What was it I needed forgiveness for this week passed?

 

When I emerged,

Chastened, reborn,

The woman had gone.

I never saw her again.

But I remember the child

I was that day,

The one who could not yet know

A grief so profound.

A heart so broken.

A life never

Bargained for.

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