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by Abigail Van Buren

Investment in Forgiveness Will Pay Big Dividends

DEAR READERS: This week is International Forgiveness Week. In years past, I have cited a portion of the lovely poem by George Roemisch, which is appropriately titled "Forgiveness":

"Forgiveness is the fragrance of the violet which still clings fast to the heel that crushed it."

In response to many requests from readers to see the entire poem, here it is:

FORGIVENESS

Forgiveness is the wind-blown bud which

blooms in placid beauty at Verdun.

Forgiveness is the tiny slate-gray sparrow

which has built its nest of twigs and

string among the shards of glass upon the

wall of shame.

Forgiveness is the child who laughs in merry

ecstasy beneath the toothed fence

that closes in Da Nang.

Forgiveness is the fragrance of the

violet which still clings fast to the

heel that crushed it.

Forgiveness is the broken dream which

hides itself within the corner of the

mind oft called forgetfulness so that it

will not bring pain to the dreamer.

Forgiveness is the reed which stands up

straight and green when nature's mighty

rampage halts, full spent.

Forgiveness is a God who will not leave

us after all we've done.

-- GEORGE ROEMISCH

So, Dear Reader, a gentle reminder: If perchance you are the "heel" that crushed a violet -- this is the week to seek forgiveness. -- LOVE, ABBY