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Below is the poem entitled Atonement which was written by poet Carrie Richards. Please feel free to comment on this poem. However, please remember, PoetrySoup is a place of encouragement and growth.

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The image of guilt has been etched
in our conscience
from the moment we are born
sketched in charcoal, shades of black
and partly gray, sharp against white, 
bitter truths against the light

A contrast of shadows, shapes, 
Right against wrong
Seeking the confessional for
layers of a coat of shame

A shedding of the shroud of self loathing
A lifting of the weight of anxiety
that pulls with the force of gravity
against the axis of one's self esteem

It does not necessarily always come wrapped in a box
where solitary confinement
is surrounded by hushed voices
wrapped in anonymity
bathed in the holy waters of forgiveness
sprinkled with a blessing
and a promised Hail Mary

It can come from a child
left with the evidence
of a crumb
still clinging to 
a chin

Or can come
as the last breath
from the one
facing death

It is accompanied by the soft sound
of relief,
a sigh,
a whispered voice groping at the frayed edge
in hope of salvation
of hope for forgiveness

We are born
knowing the score

When keeping the weight
of the shame
holds more
than we

Contest: "The Confessional"

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  1. Date: 10/7/2013 9:52:00 PM

  1. Date: 7/17/2013 8:55:00 PM
    Really beautiful! Carrie! Thank you for your kind words...jimbo

  1. Date: 7/12/2013 12:40:00 PM
    the wide range of emotion is transcended into a wonderful revelation of poetic instances so potent that what is left is only awe from where i am... you are #1, carrie..:) hugggs!

  1. Date: 7/11/2013 7:11:00 PM
    This is such a fantastic contest entry my friend! You have exceeded even your highest level of expertise with this poem, a fabulous piece! What a tremendous verse, such an amazing poem, Great Work!!

  1. Date: 7/11/2013 6:54:00 PM
    Wow! Carrie, this is so well written! Fantastic write! Best wishes in the contest! Love, Kim

  1. Date: 7/11/2013 6:43:00 PM
    These lines are spectacular. All of them! Very, very thought-provoking.

  1. Date: 7/11/2013 6:39:00 PM
    This is a wise poem you have writte. Thanks for your words of support, they are appreciated.

  1. Date: 7/11/2013 4:40:00 PM
    Carrie, your free verse is just so wonderfully written, you are a true poet, best of luck in the contest, constance

  1. Date: 7/11/2013 4:07:00 PM
    Beautifully written. :o)