Penance

A fountain
sits in front
of an old church.
I walk inside
and look up at the massive
ceiling. Birds are perched
on the old wooden beams.
There is a tomb of a saint,
with a sign reading,
Make a donation and I will
pray for you.
Next to the sign
is a box of candles.
I place some change
into a lockbox
with a coin slot.
There are no
lit candles and
I have no matches. So,
I place an unlit
candle next to the tomb.
It’s okay
the coins made noise.

by Dennis O’ Connell