'Meanwhile I was sinning more and more'

Saint Augustine


I suffered when Una my first love
was torn from my side—
It crushed my heart.          
We sent her back to Africa—
an obstacle to marriage
and advancement in the Church.
The day she left, my diseased
soul, fluttered above my
mother’s head. Months
passed until her news arrived:
vowing she’d never give
herself to another man.
Our son, Godsend, lived
with me inside the Gates
growing up without sanction
of wedlock. Una ate wild honey
and tried to ease her pain.
There’d be no healing for anyone.
Her absence was a wound—
A slave to lust, I took another
mistress. Long days, those
bleak nights. My side was raw,
until the wound began
to fester, there was no sign
of healing—I was sinning more
and more, aware there’d be no cure.