Occurred to me after seeing "I'm Not There" and even more so after a fellow student recommended listening to Todd Haynes's interview on Fresh Air that the following, written by me age 16, was my youthful attempt to think about regret, opportunity, identity, etc. (In its original format, it's handwritten. It was an asignment from a psychology class, which asked that we complete the trite saying: "If I had my life to life over again" within a triangle for some quasi-poetic reason, I suppose.) It always makes me a little sad when I read it both because it's so very trite, and because I know I really meant it -- and maybe still do. (I've tried to reproduce the way the triangle made the lines break):
my life to
live over again
I'd be more under-
standing when it
comes to other people.
I would try to give more
of myself instead of always
holding back. I would enjoy
the present and stop worrying
about the future. I'd laugh more
and cry less. I'd have more confidence
in myself. I'd play more and work less, I'd
try things that I probably won't succeed at.
I'd be myself and not care what other people think of me.
I'd wear weird clothes and say weird things. I would read more
poetry. I'd gather leaves in the fall and make snowmen in the winter.
I'd live a thousand lives instead of just one.