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My Guilt

When I was a child I walked two miles to school
accompanied by a neighbor boy two years younger.
Freddie was fat and freckle faced
with wheat-straw hair and a mean stepmother.
It was late fall and one day his father
bought him a new winter cap.
It was made of heavy brown tweed with ear flaps.
It cost one dollar and twenty cents.

The next morning when he joined me
on the way to school, he showed me his new cap.
Almost bursting with pride, he took it off
so I could see the rabbit fur lining the ear flaps.
Whether out of downright meanness, or jealousy
because I didn’t have a new cap,
just last year’s old red knitted toque,
I snatched it out of his hand
tossing it in the air and catching it again.
This went on for about half a mile.

Screaming and pleading, he ran after me.
But his legs were shorter than mine,
he couldn’t catch me.
Winded, I stopped and thrust the cap down a badger hole.
He ran up sobbing and reached down into the earth.
But the hole was deep, his arm not long enough.
He sat back on his heels and cried bitterly.
Guiltily, I stretched my arm down,
But there was no bottom, or so it appeared.
“Come on,” I said, “We’ll be late for school,
we’ll get it on our way home tonight.”

All day I felt his troubled gaze upon me
and I had trouble focussing on the printed page.
When we trudged homeward after school,
we tried again to rescue the cap, with no success.
And since Freddie was not allowed to loiter,
nor was I, we gave up.
Freddie dragged his feet, dreading to face
his stepmother and I too cowardly
to confess my guilt.

Later that evening his father took a shovel
and dug, but the hole was deep, slanting off
in different directions underground.
He gave up too and Freddie cried himself to sleep.
After that he came to school bareheaded.
My heart was like a stone in my breast
when I looked at his ears red with cold.
But I had no money to buy him another cap.
even when I wanted to which I suppose I didn’t.

They moved away after that, not because of the cap,
but drought, poverty, and all that goes with it
drove them to another part of the country.
Through the many years since,
Freddie’s sad face haunts me accusingly
and rightly so, for the callous thing I had done,
when I was twelve and he was ten.

-Agnes Copithorne

I have to imagine that I am the speaker in this poem MY Guilt and that 15 years have passed since Freddie and his family moved away. I have acquired Freddie's mailing address through a mutual friend. Becuase I am still bothered by pangs of guilt, i decide that I need to write hima letter of apology. Write Freddie a letter to try to explain the reasons behind your callous act. You should also deal with how you presently feel about the incident.

I have done this assignment, and would like to get it edited. So after reading my letter, can you please edit it. Thank you very much in return:-)

Dear Freddie;

Since you have left from here, nothing

seems the same. Each day brings more

darkness in my life; I regret about

the incident made by me in the past.

You probably got over with your pain,

but mine gets worse each day. That

guilt is locked deep within me; one

day it'll be the reason for my death.

I apologise to you for snatching away

your new cap and throwing it down the

badger hole. I was jealous of you

having a new cap, and not me. It was

my ego which compelled me to do such a

callous act. I apologise to you

wholeheartdly. Please forgive me

Freddie. You must be living in your

present right now; Making preparations

to move on to the future. I am still

living in the past, feeling repentent.

Without you accepting my apology, I

will not be ablt to move onto the

future. It is rightly said that

whatever you reap, you shall sow, and

that has happened with me. God has

given me a punishment for my mistake

with you. That guilt made me drop out

of school and knocked out of my house.

I am all alone; out in the streets,

begging for money. All the money I

gained past those days has been used

just for food. This letter I have sent

to you by stealing ornaments from the

shop. I am not just a bad human, but

also a criminal. Injustice has been

played on me. Who knows about

tomorrow. By forgiving me Freddie, you

will give my soul peace.

Love; Sara

Can you please edit this, and tell me if I have set up the letter good, menaing Love; Sara. Is it supposed to be Love, Sara?

  • English-Poetry -

    Sara, this is an excellent poem.

    It's supposed to be Love, Sara.

  • English-Poetry -

    Thank you very much Ms. Sue:-)

  • English-Poetry -

    You're welcome, Sara.

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