The Penitent : Audio slideshow!ArtqrYWVxxCUwVki3GTniaAWuBon

Click on the link above to view the slide show that accompanies the reading of The Penenitent, a poem found in my book Splendor from Ashes available on The poem can also be found below:

The Penitent (2004)

My God, I relent.

What did I not do right?

Which t’s did I not cross? Which i’s left I undotted?

Was I too haughty, ambitious, proud?

Please tell me, Lord.

I might have erred in ignorance.

For my errors I want to atone,

so that the pain will cease.

I hate myself for being weak,

for being pain’s unrelenting prey.

Shine forth your light in the valley

of this approaching death

that masks true faith

in the circularity of its jagged labyrinth.

Is there no absolution,

no healing for the penitent?

Why are wounds still raw,

routinely reopened,

exposing pink flesh to fresh infections?


20 thoughts on “The Penitent : Audio slideshow

  1. So beautifully written and even not being religious I can still appreciate the beauty of your words. This line here struck me especially ‘I hate myself for being weak,for being pain’s unrelenting prey’. There have been times where I have been annoyed at myself for getting upset or showing emotion when in actuality that it is all part of human nature. It is not a weakness to allow ourselves to feel pain or be in pain but I know at times it can be hard to think otherwise.


  2. This is so raw and heartfelt. Reading this poem felt like I was digging deep into someone’s soul. Love that you created accompanying slides, too.


  3. This poem is filled with so much anguish and desperation. Your poems are always filled with such raw emotion that puts any reader or listener in your position.


  4. At least it sounds like you know where to turn. 🙂 I rely heavily on my faith, always, but especially when I’m hurting. It helps, always.


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