He Read the Line

He read the line about burying the dead —
family, friends, those from the past
who keep occupying minds not necessarily

for the best, but what about his mind
and his deeds and misdeeds and sins of
omission and commission from the past

distracting like dancing demons enabled
to some extent by a Dutch Reformed
mother conjuring for him ghosts of guilt

and a Swedish father passing down the
grand Scandinavian tradition of igniting
flames of shame in children? And then

one day he spoke with a women who had
done some of the same things he had
done, honestly confessing and re-

gretting but obviously, seen in her
joyful smile, free of the dancing
demons and for some inexplicable but

wonderful reason, his demons took
flight and he sleeps blissfully
through the night. Without even

knowing it, he let go and let God
and in that he began to understand
self-forgiveness and the grace

that waited patiently for him
to come home from wandering in
the wilderness of his own creation.

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