I used to rush
  To church each week
    My venal sins to expel
Just a good
  Little Catholic boy
    Trying hard to stay out of Hell.

But my efforts
  At piety
    Were a real sacramental mess
Because I rushed
  To church each week
    With nothing at all to confess.

So we'd sit there
  The priest and I
    Fulfilling our sacred duties
I'd make up things
  He'd fall asleep
    It wasn't very pretty.

I thought to be
  A good Catholic boy
    I had to make full confession
Even if against
  The Lord I'd
    Committed no transgression.

The only sin
  I had committed
    Which might require absolution
Was making up
  Venal sins to
    Lie about during confession.

At last the priest
  Had had enough
    Of my absence of moral strife
He woke himself
  Threw back the curtain
    And told me to 'Get a life!'

That's when you taught
  Me how to sin
    My passions you enflamed
For the first time
  I really knew
    What makes the impure ashamed.

Now when I rush
  To church each week
    To recapture my innocence
I have real sins
  I must confess . .
    That has made all the difference.

Even the priest
  Has come to life
    He now sits at rapt attention
He clears his throat
  And 'oohs' and 'ahs'
    At each new sin I mention.

Perhaps he wants
  To swap places
    To live the stories I tell
That might be
  The only way
    I can avoid going to Hell.

© 2001 by Michael J. Farrand

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