I am a perpetual penitent,
the eternal student of remorse,
practicing the act of self-forgiveness.
One forgiving another is a gift to both.
Forgiving self, however, is an elusive endeavor,
an art perhaps best reserved for mystics.
From time to time I sail
the channels of regret, and
steer through an archipelago of imperfections,
real and imagined. The waters of regret run wild.
They are like rapids that agitate with the
anguish of old unpardoned errors.
I seek consultations with regret, but it is like a dissident
ambassador who will not come home.
I have made a study of omissions, the times when
not enough was said and not enough was done.
Keeping company with omissions makes for long
and tortuous nights. In some way, we all carry a journal
of remorse. In the pages are words of wounds, and
wounds of silence.
In between revisions of my past, small victories of
forgiveness emerge through the cracks in the
granite of my guilt. I salute the small victories,
and I embrace them when I make peace with my regrets and
seek pardon of myself.
I am who I chose to forgive.
True forgiveness, kind in its reverence for the
transparency of a fool,
cleanses the nucleus of the soul,
and with a crude club
chases the inevitable rats of revision
down a blind alley,
where they belong.
© 2004 J. Andrew Rodriguez