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What might have been in another life

I received another poem from my friend the poet, Bud Brand, which suggested a topic for another column.

A good number of the elderly, such as the writer, reads this column. The young readers, if any, are viewing this topic more in the here and now rather than in retrospect.

Let’s read Bud’s poem, “What Might Have Been,” first:

Wars have always had a place

In the hearts of evil men,

and that is why we all should cry

when we consider what might have been.

It truly seems to be sage

to replace a sword with a pen

it is indeed wise

to dispel lies

and to dream what might have been.

Many men think in self-serving ways

with their minds in iniquity’s den;

perhaps some day

we’ll learn not to stray

as we yearn for what might have been.

That would be great wouldn’t it? Think of all the individuals killed, wounded or forever disabled by wars. Think of the dollars spent on wars that could have been used making life better for so many people. Maybe, we will rely on negotiation more now because we know nuclear power could, for all practical purposes, wipe out our civilization.

We all could write a book about what might have been. At least, we older ones could.

What would you say if I asked you?

When I asked myself, I just couldn’t come up with anything worth passing on. I’ve had an infinite series of good luck in my life. So I called on Google to help me out and tell me what others have said.

Maybe the comments will give you ideas if anyone ever asks you that question.

They all had lots more to say, but I’m sharing only one comment they made:

Erma Bombeck, humor columnist, said, “I would seize every minute, look at it and really see it … Give it, and never give it back. Stop sweating the small stuff!”

Author Nadine Stair, at age 85, said, “I would be silly more than I was this trip.”

Writer Will Durant said, “Gaiety is wiser than wisdom.”

Sandra Martz, author, said, “I would pick more daisies.”

Country singer Eddy Arnold wrote and sang a song saying, he’d do the same things again.

That is pretty much as I felt.

Alastair Reid, poet and scholar, translated a Spanish poem he thought had been written by Borges:

If I were able to live my life over again

Next time, I would try to make more mistakes

I would not try to be so perfect; I would make more mistakes

I would be much more foolish than I have been,

In fact I would take very few things seriously

I would be much less sanitary

I hope none of the young readers will take these comments as guidance to follow in their earlier stages of life. Superior teachers would run me out of the city.

These folks all had reputations for having done some good things so they had to have been most serious most of their lives.

Maybe that is why they let loose at this stage.

Bernie Hughes, Ed.D,  can be reached at bernie3024