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The Little Review
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Poem for Thanksgiving


The Thanksgivings
By Harriet Maxwell Converse

Translated from a traditional Iroquois prayer

We who are here present thank the Great Spirit that we are here
        to praise Him.
We thank Him that He has created men and women, and ordered
        that these beings shall always be living to multiply the earth.
We thank Him for making the earth and giving these beings its products
        to live on.
We thank Him for the water that comes out of the earth and runs
        for our lands.
We thank Him for all the animals on the earth.
We thank Him for certain timbers that grow and have fluids coming
        from them for us all.
We thank Him for the branches of the trees that grow shadows
        for our shelter.
We thank Him for the beings that come from the west, the thunder
        and lightning that water the earth.
We thank Him for the light which we call our oldest brother, the sun
        that works for our good.
We thank Him for all the fruits that grow on the trees and vines.
We thank Him for his goodness in making the forests, and thank
        all its trees.
We thank Him for the darkness that gives us rest, and for the kind Being
        of the darkness that gives us light, the moon.
We thank Him for the bright spots in the skies that give us signs,
        the stars.
We give Him thanks for our supporters, who had charge of our harvests.
We give thanks that the voice of the Great Spirit can still be heard
        through the words of Ga-ne-o-di-o.
We thank the Great Spirit that we have the privilege of this pleasant
        occasion.
We give thanks for the persons who can sing the Great Spirit’s music,
        and hope they will be privileged to continue in his faith.
We thank the Great Spirit for all the persons who perform the ceremonies
        on this occasion.

--------

Wednesday arrived, and with it the snow that had been forecast, though we ended up with nothing sticking on the roads and only a dusting on the grass -- enough for my neighbors' kids to build a very small snowman with grape eyes and a baby carrot nose. At 11 a.m., Paul and I went to College Park to pick up first Adam at his dorm, then Daniel at the lab where he works before stopping to pick up his clothes -- he got another extremely impressive post-graduation job offer today! -- which required that we drive on the Beltway during the worst of the storm. It was very pretty and I was very glad not to be behind the wheel!



We made it home with everyone and had a late lunch together except for Adam who had to eat everything in his fridge before the dorms were locked for the long weekend. Then we watched Dark City while Paul finished work and I folded laundry, since the kids had not seen the movie, and I took a walk to see the snow. Adam had demanded "non-diner" food for dinner, meaning not bland, so we had Indian stuff. After that, we watched Monty Python Live : One Down, Five to Go, which none of us had seen -- it's hilarious and has so many of their best moments -- and A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving, which all of us have seen every year for ages!
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