Saturday, May 1, 2010

Something about regret

"Hope in a Prison of Despair" by E. De Morgan

Here's the lament of someone who spent just one day in "riotous living" and is experiencing great regret:

The Debt

This is the debt I pay
Just for one riotous day,
Years of regret and grief,
Sorrow without relief.

Pay it I will to the end—
Until the grave, my friend,
Gives me a true release—
Gives me the clasp of peace.

Slight was the thing I bought,
Small was the debt I thought,
Poor was the loan at best—
God! but the interest!

-- by Paul Laurence Dunbar

It's a beautifully crafted little poem and a truly evocative one. It can give us material for reflection about making reckless choices, I suppose. Of course, a reasonbly high doctrine of grace helps us let go of the suffering that accompanies regret. Sometimes, however, the consequences of recklessness really can't be undone - at least not in this life.

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