Letters & Opinion

My New Year’s Confession

Kensley Peter Charlemange
Independent Eye by Kensley Peter Charlemange

A new year is upon us and one (at least I) wonders: “What really is new about the year?” You wonder: “What cataclysmic change is about to happen in the political landscape in our country?” At least I do.

What social change? I hear that we are drinking too much and we are probably on the way to setting a new boozing record and then there is the sounding cymbal of a new epidemic at our health institutions. That tobacco smoking is no good. How long must you tell people that?

A caution came from the Anglican priest to our politicians to be more righteously inclined and to him that means assembling more frequently at church. An election year is here and I am very sure you will see a lot more of them in church, but will that translate to righteousness? That happened five years ago, just like the upheaval in infrastructural projects; all roads getting fixed, all potholes being blocked and if you want to see your dead mother again, they might just make that happen.

Cataclysmic is a strong word and I have said that there is no need for a revolution but an evolution. But just how does that happen? It means coming to a consciousness, coming to a realization that some things are not working. It calls for analysis. It calls for awareness and right thinking, and being drunk and high all the time will not bring us to the new horizon.

My wish is that we as Saint Lucians will embrace the message rather than vilifying the messenger. And please allow me to share my New Year’s Confession.

My New Year’s Confession
Forgive me Father for I have sinned!
“Happy New Year!” they all tell me,
But are not they as guilty as me?
Was it not just yesterday that I, together with them,
was debased in drunken stupor?
And is not the lingering effect, the hangover
To last the whole year through?
How has this new day cleansed me
And this year been made anew?
Was it not a week ago that I laid in adulterous pleasure
in celebration of thy son’s birth?
And on Christmas Eve that I heralded in a holy night that I left defiled?
Attended a midnight mass, the colour of my heart- pitch dark?
Did not I a month ago buy luxuries I could ill afford?
Had more than enough to eat and drink,
enough to lay waste to the pigs?
Am I not deserving of the stone of gluttony
and the vendor of liquor twice my cursing?
Shall I not die with the swine that thou have forbidden?
Why still does your everlasting breath pass on to me?
Saw I not thee naked and not clothe thee?
Saw I not thee hungry and not feed thee?
Saw I not thee thirsty and gave thee nothing to drink?
And when December comes again will not I the same things do?
When does it stop?
When really does the old year end and the New Year begin?
Oh my sins, oh my sins, oh my many sins!

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