The Confessional


In the Confessional
Listening for the door to slide,
                I self examine.
My throat spasms up thru my lips,
                a ball of gossip.

Gossip rolls down the front of my dress.
                Horrified, I grasped
for it, as it ricochets off the walls
                and out the door.

Gossip sneaked under the pews.
                That slippery sphere
rolled on faster and faster,
                murmuring away.

Horror sucked away my breath;
                mocking me, rolling on.
I find myself running on my knees,
                passed shocked penitents.

Down the aisle to the Tabernacle.
                Gossip mocked louder.
How vile and loathsome is gossip,
                Slippery, slimy, sphere.

Leaping to snatch it up quickly,
                it slips my fingers
and rolls down the steps out the church,
                muttering insults.


Once outside, gossip bounces
                every which way.
Stop it.  Stop it.  Stop it.  I scream.
                It’s uncontrollable.

Uncaring, gossip runs away
                into the busy street,
Right under the tires of a car.
                The taunting stops.

Flattened, the ball of gossip breaks
                open a bleeding stream
of lies, stories, and useless talk--
                dripping a foul trail.


Off the road and into the gutter
                run my lies and shame,
now absolved by God’s mercy,
                down the sewer drain.

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