Guilt


Guilt

Is a rare bird of shame

Its plumage

Breathtaking

For guilt

Captures the beholder, willing or not

Averting gaze from all else

Guilt will render paradise dowdy

Comparing freedom with the chains of its capture

Guilt is an old, fond bruise

Reminder of moments left torn to shreds

It will piece them carefully back

Twice as convincing, twice the weight

Strung round your neck like noose of sea pearls

Begging to be drowned

Guilt is a rose bush with bleeding thorns

A shudder as you catch yourself thinking of

Those pursed secrets you’ll never disclose, even to yourself

Snapshots you expunge, that still, listlessly, rise from the depths

Never speak of it, even to the merry faced doctors 

Plunging their needles as far as they’ll go

Guilt

Makes you sick

Wan faced, old before your time 

Aloof in the varnished secret

Guilt

Steals your liberty 

But like a lie

Guilt is not vanquished, even by truth

There are things better never admitted

Keep them so deep inside you start believing the deception

Until

Like a wide eyed bride

Guilt takes your hand 

And plunges you back where you’ve been all along

There’s no solution to shame when it’s too late to undo

The poison that you drink, the person you’ve turned into

Guarding yourself like a wreck against sharp rocks

With less and less by the day to salvage

If you spoke it out loud

Surely the very sky would catch fire

How many of us must carry a spark?

Burning in our secret hearts?

And maybe this is why

You never know another person by what they share

Instead

It is the unsaid

Electric in the air

We recognize in others

The tarnish of shame

As clear as promises once given

Cannot be refunded

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31 thoughts on “Guilt

  1. These lines you’ve punched in the gut:

    Guilt is an old, fond bruise

    Reminder of moments left torn to shreds

    It will piece them carefully back

    Twice as convincing, twice the weight

    Strung round your neck like noose of sea pearls

    Begging to be drowned

    Life reminders of how guilt follows he/or she in times of what hurt they’ve caused
    and the pain they’ve left. It’s a sad truth and you’ve expressed this poem so bold and well written and powerful driven poem.

  2. Life: the everyday test that we take until we die. So many old things become new, so many new things become old. People–hard work that we are not often prepared to deal with, but for the sake of being human, must. This is now a favorite of mine from you.

  3. Wow! Have I ever read another poem about specific amd poetic about guilt as this! The thoughts and the way they were constructed are just amazing! Great poem!

  4. your articulation of a very twisty biscuit is brilliant. i have a challenge for you, as i think you are up to the challenge. will you write about an individual who has learned to rule others by knowledge of their guilty secrets, but one who also creates guilt-inducing scenarios and then rules new guilties as well?

  5. Guilt is a pointless emotion. It changes nothing. It only torments and poisons the heart. What’s done is done and once done there is no going back. Only going forward perhaps with the resolve to never make the same mistake again. But to tie the rock of quilt around one’s neck is a pointless pursuit and those who insist on our feeling of guilt commit a far worse sin for the Lord has grant us forgiveness of all sins and shortcomings should we but ask. 🙂 ❤

  6. You’ve so brilliantly and accurately described guilt and what it does to us. No doubt we can all relate. It’s a hard subject to write about, talk about. But it’s also a human subject. You’ve put it into words beautifully, Candice, and it becomes a gift to your readers – and I thank you. ❤️💕

  7. Dr Wayne Dyer had some powerful things to say about the futility of guilt. It ha a big impact on me when I read one of his self-help first books, Your Erroneous Zones.

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