Daily Archives: September 8, 2015



I shoulda been more studious when I went to school
I shoulda had more boundaries and stuck to the rules
I shoulda stuck with writing like my teachers expected
I shoulda kept trying til my style was perfected
I shoulda gone to college, and overcome my fear
Instead of being a loser and ending up here

I shoulda seen my father’s weaknesses and flaws
I shoulda realised what a messer he was
Instead of being groomed by his discouraging tongue
I shoulda closed my ears to him when I was young
I shoulda respected my mother’s praise
I shouldn’a wasted those precious days

I shoulda backed off when that man walked my way
I shoulda closed my heart and locked it away
I shoulda listened to my friends when they said he was taken
I shoundn’a pretended that they must be mistaken
I shoulda built a life that didn’t rely
On distant thoughts of that unsuitable guy

I shoulda shown more love to the man who loved me
I should’na been so desperate to wriggle free
I shouldn’a left him for a life of abuse
with the wrong kind of guy and a different kind of noose
I should’a walked away as soon as I knew
but he was eating my brain, so what could I do?

I shouldn’a let myself get chipped and torn
Too damaged to care for my third and forth born
Too beaten to fight for my two older girls
But I’m forgiving myself as my life unfurls
I won’t let the past taint our way of living
I’ve learnt the skill of taking, and the beauty of giving

©Jane Paterson Basil

Written for Writing 101: Day 2