Confession | Bruce Lansky

I have a brief confession

that I would like to make.

If I don’t get it off my chest

I’m sure my heart will break.

I didn’t do my reading.

I watched TV instead—

while munching cookies, cakes, and chips

and cinnamon raisin bread.

I didn’t wash the dishes.

I didn’t clean the mess.

Now there are roaches eating crumbs—

a million, more or less.

I didn’t turn the TV off.

I didn’t shut the light.

Just think of all the energy

I wasted through the night.

I feel so very guilty.

I did a lousy job.

I hope my students don’t find out

that I am such a slob.

Bruce Lansky, “Confession” from My Dog Ate My Homework. Copyright © 1991 by Bruce Lansky. Reprinted under Educational Fair Use exception, per Section 107 of Title 17, United States Code.

 

What is a confession? The Merriam-Webster gives us the following possible definitions:

“1: to tell or make known (as something wrong or damaging to oneself): admit

2: to acknowledge (sin) to God or to a priest

3: to declare faith in or adherence to: to profess”.

I would submit that confession means all these things, but also something more, something more accurately represented in this poem above than in the definitions. Confession recognizes, like the teacher who is no better than his or her students, our failings and our equality. Moreover, as the poem notes in the beginning, to not confess is only to hurt yourself. I’m particularly happy to use a poem here, because I believe that a confession, like a poem, is an expression of the heart. And that is what our writers have written. With that in mind, I give you this edition of the Ichthus, and in it, our confessions.

Yours in Christ, yours always,

William C. Sack

Will Sack ’17 lives in Pforzheimer House and concentrates in East Asian Studies and History.

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