If The Past Year Were Offered Me Again
~Lady Gregory Augusta~
If the past year were offered me again,
And choice of good and ill before me set
Would I accept the pleasure with the pain
Or dare to wish that we had never met?
Ah! could I bear those happy hours to miss
When love began, unthought of and unspoke
That summer day when by a sudden kiss
We knew each other’s secret and awoke?
Ah no! not even to escape the pain,
Debate and anguish that I underwent
Flying from thee and my own self in vain
With trouble wasted, till my strength all spent
I knew at last that thou or love or fate
Had conquered and repentance was too late.
In consideration of the past years, I know it’s quite easy to wish I could have the time all over again. This or that may not have turned out my way and niggling thoughts and doubts begin to surface. I have wanted to do it all over again and I have wanted to do things differently because sometimes “what’s done is done” is of very little comfort to me. I think of my past often although I do not live there because once it was a home to me. The good and the ill of it being more than just arbitrary events or occasions but instances of influence in a life as it was being lived. Instances which have shaped my here and now, and which will undoubtedly influence my what will be.
So perhaps, I am glad that time-machines wherever they are sold are considerably expensive, because I’m not certain what I’d do if I could have one. Though maybe I’ve forgotten that changing my past would affect more than just me. Maybe I’d have gone to class more, or just not taken a certain road. Regardless, I didn’t and I did and all in all, to repent would be inadequate. I could say that life is but a sorrow tempered with bits of joy but that would just be melancholy. So what I will say then because this I do believe, is that pain does more to strengthen us and thus it unlike pleasure endures. After all, in considering the past years, I would have been tempted to undo the ill but perversely, it had more to teach me than the good ever did.
May you live a life of sweetness and sour and be thankful for all of it, for every hour. If it was all sweet, you would go through life without honesty and if it were all sour, you would live without any hope.
To the New Year,