Comments 29

Shadow Of A Sin

In the calm of an empty room

I found Pride behind the mirror glass,

and coaxed it into daylight.

I fanned flames from ash

with a slip of red silk,

slashed open white to the skin,

bared like orange pith,

small defense against an outside world.

Like water,

Pride slipped from me at a doorway

and in the mirror

was only sin the colour of shame.

Grey again in the ruins of an inferno,

I told myself

no one was looking at me anyway.



This entry was posted in: Poetry


Carol J Forrester is a writer and a history geek. Her debut collection 'It's All In The Blood' came out November 2019. She has a 2:1 BA degree in history from Bath Spa University, enjoys judo at least twice a week, and tries to attend poetry events around the Midlands when she can. Her flash fiction story ‘Glorious Silence’ was named as River Ram Press’ short story of the month for August 2014 and her short story ‘A Visit From The Fortune Teller’ has been showcased on the literary site Ink Pantry. Her poems ‘Sunsets’ and ‘Clear Out‘ were featured on Eyes Plus Words, and two of her poems were included in the DVerse Poets Pub Publication ‘Chiaroscuro’ which is available for purchase on amazon.Her poem ‘Until The Light Gets In‘ was accepted and published at The Drabble and her poem ‘Newborn’ was published by Ink Sweat & Tears. She has been lucky enough to write guest posts for sites such as Inky Tavern and Song of The Forlorn and has hosted a number of guest bloggers on her site Writing and Works.


  1. I like the self reflection and the concluding last line gave me pause ~ Good one, including the creative title ~

    • See I’m not sure it’s about rationalising our vices so much as realising that it’s not always vice to want to feel confident in our own bodies. It’s like a lot of things, all in moderation.

      • Perhaps I misread. I believe you are talking about your own self-confidence and feeling proud of your self! …leaving it all at the door when you leave. Very good!

  2. Self-reflection and ‘Pride behind the mirror glass’ – a wonderful poem, Carol. The ‘slip of red silk, slashed open white to the skin’ is a strong contrast to ‘Grey again in the ruins of an inferno’.

    • Thank you Kim. I was trying to find that contrast between feeling amazing in something but then loosing all that confidence like knocking over a glass of water.

    • To be honest that wasn’t what was on my mind when I wrote this. It was more about the fragility of self confidence and the isolation that comes with anxiety and low self esteem. I think I may have missed the mark though.

  3. I like your spoken version and how your pride eluded you like quicksilver or liquid. It’s not so readily captured or tempered. I found the ending to be profoundly sad and can relate, as I wrote about this a bit in my own poem for this prompt. Here we are wrestling with evil or at least with vices, to the point of near death, and no one even cares.

    • Thank you for your comment. I kind of wanted to flip the idea of pride on its head with this one. I know it’s seen as a sin or a vice but in the other hand self-confidence and self-assurance are a sort of pride as well. Without them we suffer just as much as with too much.

  4. Mirrors in two poems in a row from you. They are both so lovely and rich, and the spoken version is a great gift… so it is wonderful to have confidence, that I believe requires no penance. To lift one up over another is more at the root of sinful pride. The truth for the woman in the poem is that a very important person is looking at her, she herself, and she can love and value that I would hope, but it can be a process. This resonates with me today as I am sitting in my car typing this I am just about to step out for the first time in broad daylight dressed and presenting as a mildly good-looking transgender female, nervous, proud, not confident, perhaps wanting and simultaneously hoping “nobody is looking at me anyway.” Cheers! Thank you, here goes!

    • Thank you for this lovely comment and I wish you all the best today! I hope you find your confidence along the way and that these first steps are ones of joy.
      I felt like I might have missed the mark with this poem but you’ve shown me that I was closer with it than I thought.

  5. i See God ALL As Human Nature
    too now So i Won’t iMaGinE
    Be unHappy
    NoW to See Flesh
    And Blood Alive uP Close And Very Personal
    For Nothingness IS A LoneLiest Place oF aLL..
    So.. Whenever i See Feel Sense SPiRiTiNG
    Younger Folks TaKinG
    Selfies i Say Wow
    A Group
    of Humans
    who are not
    afraid oF aLL
    That is God as them too now..:)

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