Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Guest Post – I Wish I Knew Then What I Know Now! by Christopher Graham – The Story Reading Ape

I am sure like me, there have been times when you have wondered what difference might have been made to your life, if your younger self had been gifted with the experience and knowledge you have accumulated over the years.

I invited several friends from the writing community to share their thoughts on this subject which I am sure you will enjoy as much as I did.

Today my guest is Chris Graham more frequently referred to as The Story Reading Ape. Chris has been a huge supporter of my blog since the early days and this support extends out across the writing community. His archives are crammed with authors and their guest posts and is a great place to find your next book to read.

Chris shares his thoughts on the prompt in the form of a delightfully thought provoking piece of poetry.

I wish I knew then what I know now!

A sad refrain heard time and again
I wish I knew then what I know now!
Not restricted til death and that final breath
that smooths the furrowed brow.
As we grow older, and often bolder
Tis a cry most often heard
when we’ve lost the plot and feel like a clot
and a plan goes awry and absurd
Oh me, oh my, we sob and sigh
I wish I knew then what I know now!
I’d never have done it and be proved a nitwit
is the oath we then avow.
That stupid mistake we often make
when heads wiser than ours have advised
a safer way forward to achieve the reward
we wanted when we, our plans devised
But believe you me as you will see
what’s done is done and dusted
no matter what, with this and that
We did it wrong and now we’re busted.
But for good or bad, for lass or lad
Like Sinatra, we did it all our way
Just work day and night, with all your might
to make no more mistakes today.

 ©Christopher Graham 2022

My thanks to Chris for sharing his thoughts on this prompt and I know that he would love the chance to chat to you about it.

About The Story Reading Ape

My literature Hero is Terry Pratchett who, in one of his Science of Discworld books, postulated that Homo Sapiens Sapiens survived all the pitfalls that made other Homo Sapiens species become extinct, by being story telling apes.

If this is the case, then in order to be effective, for every story telling ape there had to be a story listening ape.

I am descended from them, except I read stories instead of listening to them; and author’s are the tellers of the stories I read.

I don’t so much read books as devour them, (sometimes re-devouring them several times), so I’ve set myself a long term task, to list all the books I’ve ever read on Goodreads – trouble is I’ve got the memory of a sieve and I must have read thousands of them!

After years of lugging books around with me when I travelled (pre-internet), or order them to be delivered to wherever I was (post internet), I got an eReader, which enables me to support my local library, as well as giving me access to practically every Kindle, EPUB & PDF format book ever published, via the internet.

Now all I have to do is spend the next several lifetimes reading them (I hope re-incarnation is true, although not having memories from previous lives might be a snag)

What is the purpose of my blog?

1. To introduce YOU to new (to me) authors I’ve come across in my wanderings through books and the cyberforest.

2. To provide a platform (battered old homemade soapbox) for authors to introduce themselves to you. (See my Contact Me Section for Guest Author article Guidelines)

3. As an informal information service to authors, poets, or anyone else who is thinking of becoming a published person of that ilk.

4. To promote FUN and an OASIS OF CALM and Font of useful Knowledge andTips for Indies (please do NOT feed my naughty chimps or they may follow you home) from the woes and stresses of the real world.

I hope you enjoy my blog and join my Troop of Followers

Connect to he Story Reading Ape: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK Blog: The Story Reading Ape Twitter: @StoryReadingApe


Chris and his sister gathered together the poetry written by his mother Agnes Mae Graham into a collection – My Vibrating Vertebrae and other poems.

Agnes Mae Graham

Tina Frisco 5.0 out of 5 stars Spirited Irish Poetry  Reviewed in the United States

One of the reviews for the collection

My Vibrating Vertebrae is a delightful book of poetry, comprising the works of Agnes Mae Graham and gathered and published posthumously by her two children.

As stated in the dedication, the poems span decades of Agnes’ life in 20th Century Northern Ireland, offering a flavor of Irish dialect as she puts to paper her loves, hopes, and dreams.

Two of my favorites are Nonsense Rhyme and The Women’s Rural. I can well imagine Nonsense Rhyme being read to a child who, perhaps not understanding all the words, would burst into giggles at the ending. And as I read The Women’s Rural, I delighted in the feeling of sisterhood and community it conveyed, a sorely needed phenomenon in our contemporary western society.

How Agnes must have been dearly loved by her children, Lorna and Chris, for them not only to have kept her poetry, but then to have braved the waves of indie publishing to make sure their mother had a voice in the world.

More than reading Agnes’ spirited words, I was deeply touched by the love shared between a mother and her children. I am grateful that Chris and Lorna chose to share Agnes Mae Graham with the world.

Read the reviews and buy the collection: Amazon UK –  And: Amazon US


Thanks for dropping in today and it would be great if you could spread the news of Chris’s guest post. Thanks Sally.


102 thoughts on “Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Guest Post – I Wish I Knew Then What I Know Now! by Christopher Graham – The Story Reading Ape

  1. What an awesome poem, Chris – a real classic! It’s wonderful to see you here today and be reminded of how much you do for us all. Thanks for inviting him, Sally. Toni x

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Writing the response to your prompt as a poem points to an impressive originality and creativity in Chris. I love the poem and am going to have a look at his mother’s poetry, too. xx

    Liked by 2 people

  3. What a beautiful poem, Chris. Thank you for sharing so deeply and meaningfully. And thank you, Sally, for featuring Chris today. Hugs to both of you. 🤗

    Liked by 2 people

  4. What a wonderful poem from Chris. He got me laughing here and there, and of course, the wisdom is solid. And I thoroughly enjoyed his mom’s poetry book as well. Great share, Sally, and many congrats to Chris on the fun post.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. It’s good to see Chris featured here. He deserves it.
    And what a lovely thought to publish their mother’s poems. She would have been proud of both her children.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I really enjoyed your poem, Chris. Wonderful that you chose poetry as your format. Sally, thank you for featuring Chris. Did you know he was one of the first bloggers I followed?

    Liked by 2 people

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  9. A very wise poem and attitude from Graham. I agree. We were different when we were younger, and I doubt we would have done things differently then, and I’m sure if we had, we probably would think differently now and we’d wonder why we didn’t do the opposite… Great idea for a series of posts, Sally.

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