The First Apology
Who was the first person to say sorry
and mean it?
Apology is, after all, a word, and
words are not written in concrete but river water,
coursing as far downstream as apo meant in the Greek,
logos, speech as fluid as current.
Wouldn’t, then, apology mean
to be as far away from speech as possible,
something deeply felt but unnameable,
a grief sustained like a miscarriage
of the heart?
Who, then, was the first person
to express to another,
a tired husband, say, or the
I am so ashamed for myself that there
are no words for it?
How she must have crossed the river of
ravaged language, slipping on each
stone as she went, praying both
to meet the other side
and to be pulled under along the way.