There was a man I knew once, not so long ago,
Who had performed some unspeakable ill.
He kept the act unrevealed for a year or two
Until it very nearly mastered all his will.
He couldn't take the pain that was devouring his soul;
He felt as though he was about to burst,
When emotion intervened and made guilt persevere
So he felt that no one could do worse.
The restitution of the ill was difficult indeed
And took nearly every ounce of the man's strength.
He oft thought the effort wasn't worth it to return;
The process seemed of endless length.
For a time he mastered the cause of the ill,
And was troubled no more for a while,
But without continually watching himself,
He fell back down the arduous climb.
For a time thereafter he was puzzled and confused,
But he wore the mask of insincerity.
For a long while he hid behind his mask,
Till a vision hit with startling clarity.
He remembered things that had caused him so much grief
And then a thought of horror came into his brain:
He'd forgotten how to respond to others' care
In effort to rationalize his self-wrought pain.