"The (autobiography) shouldn't be so much about the facts and details of my life but my attitude towards those facts and details," (Film director William Friedkin quoted in a magazine interview).Since I have been very free about sharing my attitudes in these posts, at least the positive ones, maybe this is an autobiography. Then again maybe I am just showing my grandkids the person I wish they would think I am.
Anyway, then a funny thing happened. While I was thinking about my autobiography and how there really isn't much to say, the last line from Robert Frost's "Birches" came to mind. Something about reflecting on my life and thinking some variation of, "One could do worse than be a...." So the next thing I did was track down the poem (on the internet of course) and read the whole thing for the first time since college. I was captured by the poem in a way that I never was before! I've always thought of myself as pretty much tone deaf when it comes to poetry; The emotion escapes me, the metaphor eludes me, and I am left with little beyond rhythm and rhyme. Then suddenly I was the boy in the birch woods and I was the man reflecting on his life and wading at least ankle deep in eternal truths. I don't think I will be tackling "Childe Harold's Pilgrimage" or "Paradise Lost" any time soon, but I may go back and take another look at some other short poems.
This post has been moldering in the draft file for some time now, so I guess I should look for some way to finish it up. So here's the thing; reflecting back on life can and probably should generate some feelings of "I should have done more." But at the same time, "One could do worse than be a swinger of birches." In "Poems, Prayers and Promises" John Denver sings, "I guess I'd have to say, it's been a good life all in all."
I have to agree with him.