Overshooting the Mark

I was driving towards my destination

a place I had never been

when I missed a number of turnoffs.

I had overshot the mark.

It made me wonder how often in life

I had overshot the mark

& missed some vital turnoffs

where, for instance. I could have become

a famous novelist like David Foster Wallace

& worn a red bandana

or rakish rock star like Keith Richards

or, god forbid,a prominent politician.

Or even married someone else!

What if you didn’t marry grandma?

my granddaughter once asked,

would I have still been born?

Most of us overshoot the mark.

It may be a good thing.

Danny Kaye, that Court Jester, once famously said,

we always land where we were meant to be.

Maybe it’s true.

I could have done worse.

40 thoughts on “Overshooting the Mark

  1. What ifs. The web of them. I like your ending. And your philosophical grand daughter. A journey in life is so simple compared to the journey of life. The biggest opportunities I missed were because of fear. But if I hadn’t been such a knee-knocking wimp, would I still have been me?

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Brilliant.

    It’s the age old question isn’t it – what if. One of the few we’ll never truly know the answer to.

    Reminds me very much of the Pulp song ‘Something Changed’ and, of course, the George Micheal classic ‘A Different Corner’.

    Great work my friemd πŸ‘πŸ–€

    Liked by 3 people

  3. that’s the question we must ask ourselves; I didn’t quite know how to answer my granddaughter — she was five at the time [ she turns 21 next week !]. Fear, anxiety trims my wings too; but in a similar quote, Danny Kaye said, ‘we always become who we were meant to be’ ; whole books could be written on this topic, religions formed on its edifice πŸ™‚

    Liked by 4 people

  4. Sorry to butt in on this delightful and entertaining exchange but what, in essence, do you think is the difference between a song and a poem? Did Leonard Cohen write songs or poems? They work as both. Maybe you just need musical skill to turn a poem into a song.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. that’s a great question; I know intuitively but will try to answer it straightforwardly: they both have words of course, though in songs they’re called lyrics probably because they’re underpinned my melodies and have musical accompaniment; songs, almost all the popular ones, are marked by repetition and have choruses — Dylan didn’t always do so, esp in ‘Shelter from the Storm’; some poems approximate to that.state. Songs of course are sung, poems spoken. And that’s only a start …. I invite others to come in here and add to the discussion — anyone?

    Liked by 4 people

    • My general opinion is that songs are poems set to music. I contend that most, if not all, songs (lyrics) could be read as a poem without the musical accompaniment or melody, just spoken voice. Of course, some would perform better than others, but that is true of straight up poems, too.

      I remember Steve Allen on TV back in the late ’70s, dressed in a tux, formally and dramatically reading the lyrics for “Hot Stuff” (Donna Summer). It was hilarious. So… yeah. I reckon not all songs would be great as poems, per se.

      Still, I’d venture to opine that MOST would.

      And, how about Baz Luhrmann’s “Everybody’s Free to Wear Sunscreen”?

      Liked by 2 people

  6. It’s been my experience
    that a fresh dose
    of the Desiderata
    always helps to divert
    any such
    existential crisis 😎
    Especially when life
    leaves you feeling a bit sore
    and like Bono
    you still haven’t found
    what you’re looking for πŸ‘οΈβ“πŸ‘οΈ

    Liked by 4 people

  7. πŸ™‚ thanks, David, for that eloquent answer: I like how you worked Bono in πŸ™‚ good advice: I haven’t read the old ‘Desiderata’ for some time so will pop over and have a look — just as soon as I see what you’re up to πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Pingback: The pieces we wish away… – Out of the Cave

  9. I ponder such thoughts a lot, wondering about the many ‘forks in the road’ and decision points in my life. There are big ones and small ones, and repetitive ones, i.e., habits that became difficult to break even when they were clearly and demonstrably destructive…

    Nevertheless, I agree with Danny Kaye, too. Especially because pining over past events does not change them or (usually) make one happier. Today is the thing. Live, love, and laugh. Reminds me of a song called “We Have This Moment.”

    Liked by 2 people

  10. How marvelous to overshoot the mark. So infinitely better than falling short. In a way you’ve transcended all your own expectations, which are still totally obtainable based on your strength and tenacity.

    Like

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