"Those were hard things for me to come by, and I offer them to you for what they may be worth." - Toby Wolff

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Forgiving Me

I think I forgave myself yesterday.
I meant to.
I actually looked in the mirror and told that woman
I forgive you

She balked
and can you blame her?

Hatching off days on the walls of her cell
bamboo shoots under the nails of her fingers
that self imposed agony of a slow pull.
Pain must be felt at all times (how else is it purgatory?)
each sliver removed bit by bit by bit
so as to feel every mile of road
as if it were neverendingneverendingneverending.

But there is only so much blood to spill.
I told her..."Woman, it's time."

That man.
That man who blew my fantasy-family house of cards
to fucking smithereens...
she forgave him the next day.
Sure as shit she wrote him and said all was forgiven.
And she meant it
because forgiving is not the same as forgetting.
It is simply an acknowledgement that something is done
and cannot be undone
and we're not going to keep hashing it out
torturing fingernails and demanding blood.

She can't do the same for herself.
Well...she couldn't...
until yesterday
tomorrow too.

"There's a host of hurts we come across
None of which alike
From the air inside the birthing room
To the darkness where we die
Though I feel I'm just as strong as any man I know
I'm not able on my own
Carry round the secrets
Only heaven knows
Crawl into our darkened rooms where only victims go
Though I feel I'm strong enough to carry all this load
I'm not able on my own

All my actions, false or true
Selfish motives I will use
We were born with knives in hand
Trained to kill our fellow man
If we're not better than the rest
How will children do their best
Find your patience, find your truth
Love is all we have to lose

I'm not able on my own"


  1. It's very moving what you write here ... sometimes if I can just get one foot moving in front of the other, I feel I'm doing okay. It's hardest, I think when we've hurt someone we cared about or let them down. Then, if we really care about them, we've got to keep trying -- worried about making the same mistake again ... but we have to keep trying, less we let them down even more ...

    Forgiveness really is divine.

    1. You are absolutely right. Hardest to do when we have let someone else down. To err is human...to forgive, divine. We are not able.

  2. oh happy day! a sliver of an opening, i can see the light on the other side.

    annie: don't let this scare you.

    i am honored and happy and hopeful and maybe even helpful to be along for this important ride to your own good self.

    i'll bet i'm the first comment. maybe double weight for me tonight. :^)


    1. Close to first :) "An important ride to your own good self" sounds like something my dad would say. Ha! A sliver of an opening. Yes, that exactly.

  3. annie, i click on that photo and see your big smile and think, good, good, forgive this girl. it's about time. and keep forgiving her. once isn't nearly enough.


    1. Yes, I believe it will be a daily task. I am human and fallible. I break. I break open and the mess is unconfined. Oh to be different, and to come to the terms that I am not as I wish, and I wish as I am not, and wishing makes nothing so.

    2. "once isn't nearly enough."
      that erin, she's got some wisdom in them bones.
      and the fact that i piggybacked on this post, this comment, kind of makes me feel like the three of us are sittin somewhere together drinking a cup of coffee, tea, wine. somewhere in a parallel universe. where we're all forgiven.

  4. oh annie this brought me to very deep breaths as i too am dealing with self-forgiveness, the hardest kind of forgiveness. baby steps, baby steps. trust in the process. baby steps.

    1. Deep breaths are good. I have been learning with my therapist how shallow my breathing is...this fight or flight kind of post traumatic thing I always seem to carry around in my airway. It's not healthy.

  5. your dad? am i in good company?


    1. In this instance, yes. It took me back to a place of joking and fun. Thank you!

  6. There is a process here unfolding each showing more hope, more understanding a way to equilibrium, a chance to for happiness where innocence at one time was enough.

    1. Unfolding. Equilibrium. Chances come and lost. Thank you for seeing hope Anthony. It helps me to see what you reflect.

  7. This reminds me of that opening verse in the song that Johnny Cash covered... "Hurt"...

    "I hurt myself today...
    To see if I still feel..."

    We have to forgive others, Annie... it's not something we do for others, but instead something we do for ourselves....

    To me, learning to forgive people who I feel have hurt me... it's almost become a form of exorcism.

    And it seems to work pretty ok...

    We have to exorcise these "ghosts" from our interiors... from haunting us... so we can move on and enjoy what Life we have left...



  8. Forgiveness is a practise Annie ... at least that's what I find. It is something I have to protect and renew because old habits die hard ... yeah well ... at least that's what I find. The smallest amount of light can cast out the deepest darkness you know? Love you Annie xx Jos

  9. Glad you are back to posting regular like, and If you can make a song out of my poem, We will honor you, please do. But I want to hear it!!!

  10. Powerful words that touched the core of my soul. Thanks, for this, your bravery and honesty, Annie.

  11. For giving up your intense possession of injury,
    I commend you.

  12. Forgiving one's self is the hardest kind of forgiveness to achieve, because we're harder on ourselves than anyone else.

    My heart swells smiling at your courage, Annie. :)

  13. Sometimes when we know only pain, we forget there is this someone inside of us who is very much human. I know at times it's hard to imagine a lighter frame of mind, a forgiving time...but you pick up the shards and you hold them close, after awhile they've nothing left to cut and become as much us as they ever were. Breathe deep of those words of forgiveness, for inside, despite all the pain you're (we're) still human. I'll take whatever glimmer I get sweet friend. (Hugs)Indigo

    P.S. Thanks for the lyrics!

  14. Annie
    You are forgiven!
    And missed!

  15. forgiveness is a journey. it comes with understanding. this is my experience. forgiveness comes after one has truly moved on. it is a blessing for everyone.

  16. touching. i can relate.


Thank you for listening.