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The Little Review
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Poem for Friday and Thanksgiving


Mayflower
By John Boyle O'Reilly

Thunder our thanks to her -- guns, hearts, and lips!
     Cheer from the ranks to her,
     Shout from the banks to her --
Mayflower! Foremost and best of our ships.

Mayflower! Twice in the national story
     Thy dear name in letters of gold --
     Woven in texture that never grows old --
Winning a home and winning glory!
Sailing the years to us, welcomed for aye;
Cherished for centuries, dearest to-day.
Every heart throbs for her, every flag dips --
Mayflower! First and last, best of our ships.

White as a seagull, she swept the long passage.
True as the homing-bird flies with its message.
Love her? O, richer than silk every sail of her.
Trust her? More precious than gold every nail of her.
Write we down faithfully every man's part in her;
Greet we all gratefully every true heart in her.

More than a name to us, sailing the fleetest,
Symbol of that which is purest and sweetest:
More than a keel to us, steering the straightest,
Emblem of that which is freest and greatest:
More than a dove-bosomed sail to the windward,
Flame passing on while the night-clouds fly hindward.
Kiss every plank of her! None shall take rank of her;
Frontward or weatherward, none can eclipse.
Thunder our thanks to her! Cheer from the banks to her!
Mayflower! Foremost and best of our ships!

--------

We had a very nice, relatively low-key Thanksgiving day despite being woken earlier than we would have wished by cats who were starving. We watched the Macy's parade, which seems to get more commercial every year -- does anyone appear who doesn't have a new CD or movie out or who isn't advertising for something? -- but had some enjoyable music. Eventually we all showered and Paul's parents arrived as we were finishing lunch, so we sat around watching football and chatting while the tofurky cooked -- my mother did the actual turkey for the non-vegetarians so we were responsible for the fake stuff.

I ate waaaay too much -- appetizers included spanakopita, hummus, brie and crackers, and nuts, dinner included stuffing, mashed and sweet potatoes, carrot souffle, cranberry sauce, and pineapple, dessert included two kinds of pie and chocolates -- and sat around chatting with my sister and in-laws while my mother had the kids running all over the house on a scavenger hunt. Eventually we were all too full to eat any more and my in-laws had to drive back to Pennsylvania, so we came home for the end of the Ravens-49ers game, which ended just as we wanted for Baltimore. Hope everyone else has had a lovely holiday, or a lovely Thursday if it's not one where you are -- we will NOT be shopping at midnight!


My kids and their cousins at the table, most with stuffed turkeys on their heads.


Earlier they all posed on the couch at my parents' house.

Younger son being a hipster...
...and all kids with My Little Pony pinata.



These are some of the stuffed turkeys decorating the table...


...and this is Paul's annual cookie cake, a rush job on the decorations this year because he forgot to make the icing till the last minute. Previous cakes: 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010.
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