Happy Thanksgiving. I’m so grateful to have a national holiday focused on gratitude. We at Modern Vintage Life are so grateful for all of you and we hope today you pend a little time making a list of the things in your life you can be thankful for. Meditate on that list and hold it close when things get hard. Gratitude is ALWAYS the secret ingredient to happiness, fulfillment and humility. Gratitude will change your life.
Here are a few poems with a thanksgiving theme…
THE HARVEST MOON
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, 1807-1882
It is the Harvest Moon! On gilded vanes
And roofs of villages, on woodland crests
And their aerial neighborhoods of nests
Deserted, on the curtained window-panes
Of rooms where children sleep, on country lanes
And harvest-fields, its mystic splendor rests!
Gone are the birds that were our summer guests,
With the last sheaves return the laboring wains!
All things are symbols: the external shows
Of Nature have their image in the mind,
As flowers and fruits and falling of the leaves;
The song-birds leave us at the summer’s close,
Only the empty nests are left behind,
And pipings of the quail among the sheaves.
THANKSGIVING LETTER FROM HARRY CARL DENNIS 1939 I guess I have to begin by admitting I’m thankful today I don’t reside in a country My country has chosen to liberate, That Bridgeport’s my home, not Baghdad. Thankful my chances are good, when I leave For the Super Duper, that I’ll be returning. And I’m thankful my TV set is still broken. No point in wasting energy feeling shame For the havoc inflicted on others in my name When I need all the strength I can muster To teach my eighth-grade class in the low-rent district. There, at least, I don’t feel powerless. There my choices can make some difference. This month I’d like to believe I’ve widened My students’ choice of vocation, though the odds My history lessons on working the land Will inspire any of them to farm Are almost as small as the odds One will become a monk or nun Trained in the Buddhist practice We studied last month in the unit on India. The point is to get them suspecting the world They know first hand isn’t the only world. As for the calling of soldier, if it comes up in class, It’s not because I feel obliged to include it, As you, as a writer, may feel obliged. A student may happen to introduce it, As a girl did yesterday when she read her essay About her older brother, Ramon, Listed as “missing in action” three years ago, And about her dad, who won’t agree with her mom And the social worker on how small the odds are That Ramon’s alive, a prisoner in the mountains. I didn’t allow the discussion that followed More time than I allowed for the other essays. And I wouldn’t take sides: not with the group That thought the father, having grieved enough, Ought to move on to the life still left him; Not with the group that was glad he hadn’t made do With the next-to-nothing the world’s provided, That instead he’s invested his trust in a story That saves the world from shameful failure. Let me know of any recent attempts on your part To save our fellow-citizens from themselves. In the meantime, if you want to borrow Ramon For a narrative of your own, remember that any scene Where he appears under guard in a mountain village Should be confined to the realm of longing. There His captors may leave him when they move on. There his wounds may be healed, His health restored. A total recovery Except for a lingering fog of forgetfulness A father dreams he can burn away.
2 CORINTHIANS 9:6-8 The one who sows sparingly From that he shall reap, But he who sows generously Will be blessed with all he needs Let each one give as he has chosen With a heart of gratitude, Not with grumbling or reluctance, But with a cheerful attitude And God is able to make all grace Abound toward you So you will be fully equipped And be blessed in all you do.