There is something about a pen’s permanency
that makes me shrink away from it-
Too much pressure to be
clear, neat and always,

On white paper if I sign my own name, my own way
I am still told to

And should I dare make a mistake
I must either
crumble up my perfect white paper and start over
cross it out, forever being stamped with the scarlet proclamation,
“I MADE A MISTAKE,” with the error there remaining,
alive, breathing-pulsing-beneath the scribble, staining
my perfect white paper.

Never mind the lines are not long enough for all of my information,
the space provided is not large enough for me to make my full markings
or, truthfully,
my hand is trembling from feelings of great shame and regret
as I fill out these here papers…
while my body feeds, without my choice, this unborn substance left by my choice.

The one great consolation about pencils
is that a mistake is easily erased away…
like it never happened.

…I wonder if that’s what Jesus was trying to convey.