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Literary Hook: Reasons to remember on Thanksgiving

November 18, 2009

By Christine Swanberg

Author and Poet

It’s hard to believe Thanksgiving is just around the corner. What follows is a poem to celebrate this special American holiday.

This poem was first published in Out of Line, a journal of peace and justice. Happy Thanksgiving to you.

This Thanksgiving, Remember

Remember the air that made the clouds that made the rain

That watered the ground and made the potatoes

Both white and sweet at your Thanksgiving table.

Remember the birds that gave the eggs that gave the meat

That baked in the oven and smelled divine

Surrounded by sage dressing at your Thanksgiving table.

Remember the sun that fed the vines that made the wine

That went into long-stemmed glasses and shimmered

Near the candles at your Thanksgiving table.

Remember the miners who culled the silver and the fire

That molded the precious metal that became a spoon

So perfectly set around your Thanksgiving table.

Remember the migrants who picked the lemons that you slice in water with ice, and who carried the pumpkins that whipped into the pie at your Thanksgiving table.

Remember the cows for all their kindnesses: the cream,

The milk, the cheese, and the chocolate that finished

The meal at your Thanksgiving table. Dare not forget:

All pilgrims who seek the higher life in strange

And wonderful places. All the invisible faces

Of those gone on, the homeless, and the struggling.

Our blue planet, that most special place in the universe,

Where we the lucky thrive amidst rivers and orchards

Where fruit hangs in perfect abundant globes.

Christine Swanberg is a local author and poet who has written several books of poetry and formerly wrote a column called “The Writer’s Garret” for this newspaper.

From the November 18-24, 2009 issue

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