Monday, 11 July 2011

If Only . . . .

People of Chilmark. Thomas Hart Benton, 1920

If only
I had not lacked so much from the beginning,
And I had had the good sense
To choose a different path from the one I chose,
And I had had the right kind of help
On the right path,
And therefore done the opposite to what I did,
And I had not been forced to do so much of what I did
at other men's behest,  
And I had then known the half 
of what I know now,
And I had been more serious,
Or I could be more serious right now,
And I would be as lucky as some others
who don't deserve their luck
and  never valued it,
And I had ten times the worldly goods that I have now
And I could do what I simply can't achieve,
Or best of all, 
If I were born again,

Well, then . . . 

Friko speaking entirely for herself,.

Sorry, dear Readers, after 17 comments taking me seriously, I've got to come in here and explain that the whole thing is meant to be the kind of dirge which all those who have never bothered to get off their bums use to explain their lack of success in life.  I wanted to make a joke about mankind in general and those in particular, who always blame something or someone else.  My joke failed.  Friko


  1. That is a great sideways look at life or what if could have been..."IF".

  2. Me too.
    Ditto. It could have been waaaay you say......If only.

  3. This explains a lot.

    I wanted to let you know that my daughter drew an interactive blog on a napkin with red marker in which I could read the comments of my viewers and my blogroll. Your blog was the only other blog by name on there. Know you are admired.

  4. Hi Friko .. if only - but actually I always think - well I would be here now and look what I've experienced and learnt .. and the people I've met etc .. I'd probably not meet them .. would others be as nice, cheerful, supportive .. etc .. so I'm happy with now - it could have been easier = yes!! Cheers and have a good week .. Hilary

  5. If wishes were horses, right? all those 'if onlys' could have resulted in things much worse. my daughter, as a teen, had a friend who's parents were quite wealthy. and as happens in wealthy families, her parents didn't really seem to be a part of her life. Plus she had some sort of serious health issue, but she had a big house (not allowed to touch the wall), lots of fancy stuff and all the activities she wanted. I asked my daughter once, if she could, would she trade places with her. no, she said, no way.

  6. ha, if only...wonder what i might do differently...

  7. If only we could – would we though?

  8. I think about that sometimes ... and I come up for myself that I had to take the other path to get to the person I am now. Had the path been any easier ... would I have appreciated what I have been given?

  9. None of us who know you would have wanted anything different in your life if it were to change who and what you are in any way.

  10. it's the eternal conundrum, If...

  11. ah! if only....

    Aloha from Waikiki;

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  12. Ah, yes, Friko, if only...haven't we all been there?
    I sometimes put myself to sleep at night imagining what I could have been, if only...
    But it's more fun to put myself to sleep at night imagining what I could do for my family and friends if I win the lottery. If I ever remember to buy a ticket, which I don't, but I don't need a ticket to dream.
    — K

    Kay, Alberta, Canada
    An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel

  13. kinda reminds me of the Kipling poem. Isnt it called "If"?

  14. Sounds like the thoughts in my own head at times!


  15. Life offers so many what if's... wow, what I could be today! But then, I kind of like the now... smiles.

  16. Regrets are destructive. What is in the past is over and done with. No amount of wishing that things were different can change a single thing. It is a waste of valuable time and energy. Each new day dawns affording us the wonderful opportunity to live in the NOW and to make the best of each new choice we have. If only...makes our life slip by unappreciated, unloved! Life is too short to live with regret. Make peace with the past and live in the moment you have right now. That's my take on things, anyway ;)

  17. Ah, the very British version of the first joke I ever learned as a child: If we had some bacon, we could have bacon and eggs, if we had some eggs.

    I keep trying not to think in terms of "what if," but I find myself veering toward it lately. That's what seems to happen no matter what it is I "try not to think about."

  18. friko - i guess that's one advantage of coming in late on a post!!! i could apply your words to mirror those of so many people whose lives i have passed through. steven

  19. Friko, I read and then came back. I had a feeling you were writing from outside your own perspective. Sometimes things get lost in translation. :)

    I posted "Oh Cruel World" awhile back and I had to do something similar, finally letting readers know it was meant to be sort of tongue in cheek humor.

    It's a strange thing to see written out, all the ways in which we can get lost in regret. Well-done.

    Thomas Hart Benton was a painter in the same Regionalistic vein as Grant Wood. interesting.

  20. Your humor showed through a glass
    darkly, dear, and I think the addendum
    you inserted will alert the more sensitive
    Friko followers to your fun and folly.
    I have moved from existential to a more
    Zen tangent as I age like a forgotten
    brew in an oaken cask, so if we are in
    lesson each lifetime, and we figure this
    out before it' s back to Bardo, then we
    can wring wonders out of the mundane
    moments of our present life.

  21. Actually, it didn't fail with me...I got it, without the explanation at the end :-). I've met a thousand of those, or more. ~Mary

  22. Friko, I love this bit of introspection...fictitious or not

  23. Love it too.

    You are correct - some always see that the grass is greener on the other side of the fence - but make no attempt to climb over it.

    Anna :o]

  24. All too often, the things that folks are looking for are right under their noses. The joke was not lost where I'm sitting.

  25. I got it the first time .... great Tale, Friko!!

  26. Honestly I wish I did not read that you intended this as a joke because that was exactly how I read it. I came away from it thinking it was a brilliant take on shoulda, coulda, woulda.

  27. Friko: Love the Platonian dialetic in this poem..Very thought-provoking self-reflection of the road not taken...what if..yes..get off me duff! Brilliant as usal lovely vocabulary; re that word but i keep wanting to write the quest dont wait for time or fate. Yes..nose to the gridestone does get polish! Eventually.hopefully?

  28. So, what do you think, are these "if only" folks the ones that live on the litter, not in the layers?

  29. Oh, yes. I've met some, I know some and I might be one. Provocative and rather fun!

  30. LOL! You can 'IF' your life away, but you can't turn back the clock. Most enjoyable :)

  31. ha ha. I have six children and excuses rule the day at times! (and I'm also including myself :) ... Very witty.,,


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