Thanksgiving is the quintessential U.S. holiday. It was formalized by President Lincoln, who set aside the last Thursday of November as a day to thank God for blessings received. Thanksgiving days were an old tradition in the United States and the colonies that preceded the nation; Lincoln’s proclamation, written by Secretary of State William Seward and in response to a letter sent to Lincoln by Sarah Josepha Hale, was issued about a month before Lincoln gave his great address at Gettysburg. It attempted to make a unified national (or Union, at that time) holiday of the various state celebrations. The day has a strong religious flavor but is loved by all in the United States, believers and non-believers alike, as a time to pause and reflect, and, these days, to watch football games (or what passes for futbol in the U.S.). Write a poem about thanks, thanking, or thankfulness.  Thanks for participating.


One heart was freed
One soul was saved
One life unchained
One sentence waived
One died for me
One took my place
One sacrifice
One act of grace
One Holy God
One Trinity
One Perfect Lamb
One thankful me


© copyright 2009, Marie Elena Good



My world was but a sterile place
where all about seemed empty space
and noonday sun would hide its face.
Then love came out of the blue

to alter fundamentally
what was and is, and is to be:
a sea change covered Earth and me
when love came out of the blue.

So now I step a lighter pace;
rejoice in noonday sun’s embrace;
write words of love in upper case
since you came, out of the blue.

I thank whatever gods may be
that you have changed the world for me,
for now my soul is light and free;
for you came, out of the blue.

© copyright 2013, William Preston

202 thoughts on “PROMPT #130 – THANKFULNESS

  1. Possessing the Gift

    To transfer this gift
    Of thanks

    Offered in prayer
    To the high ranks
    Of my God

    Something of value
    To be given away

    Must realize
    The value of blessings

    This sacred gift
    To another soul

    Travels light from
    Person to person flowing

    The seed of thankfulness
    Into others

    Them to sprout
    Reaping harvest

    Greatest gift is
    Realization that we have
    Received some blessing

    Dwelling on the
    The material things
    Not possessed

    We all possess
    One thing

    Rich or poor
    Its deep in our chest

    The great abounding
    gift of thanks

    Know it
    Sow it
    Bestow it

  2. Thanksgiving

    give thanks
    for these things:
    the wind rushing through my hair as we run
    while holding hands, warm snuggly comforters,
    hugs, kisses,
    songs we sing
    together. The list of thanksgiving could
    go on and on, but here’s the take-away:
    I’m grateful


  3. Marie, I love yours. It puts me in mind of the Apostle Creed (not sure why).Maybe because it is such a simple and lovely statement of faith.
    William – Out of the Blue is so heartwarming and beautiful.

    All too often I am grateful-
    full of little grates of life
    easily irritated
    quick to judge
    small-minded thoughts
    looking down my nose
    better than thou…
    and so I allow
    things others do
    to chafe like sand
    in my shoe.
    You humble me
    time and again
    let me see
    what I really am
    and for that
    I am grateful.


    We envied Richard Cory
    For the good life that he led,
    But it’s quite another story:
    He put a bullet in his head.

    Sometimes what we’re seeing
    Is not what’s there to see,
    And we kid ourselves believing
    What life brings is “woe is me.”

    Let’s put aside self-pity,
    Thank God for what He gives.
    Dig down to nitty-gritty,
    The very breath that lets us live.

    And don’t forget what’s gold won’t stay,
    But love is never ending.
    Things of this world will fade away.
    To God your thanks be sending.



    When I consider all who saluted this grand old flag,
    Those proud sons and daughters marching before its colors,
    Those who took their places on the perilous battlefields
    Of war where so many prayed to stay alive but perished,

    I stand emptied of all but a heart heavy with gratitude
    I need to give away. Heroic soldiers now sleeping
    soundly beneath a comforting nightlight of stars, are privy
    to life’s longtime secrets and matters of the heart.
    Brave soldiers know the words locked away inside
    the deepest part of me. They know these words are more feeble
    Than these tears striping my face,
    but words are all I’ve got.



    all were healed
    only one came back
    to say thank you

    not even
    a few of the ten
    just one gave thanks

    which shows you
    how even the healed
    need further healing


  7. Marie, Although I don’t share your belief, I admire how well you expressed it. Debi’s allusion to the Apostles’ Creed seems apt, in my opinion. Wonderful work.

  8. Sharing

    Unless we make Christmas an occasion to share our blessings, all the snow in Alaska won’t make it ‘white’. Bing Crosby

    If all my blessings were snowflakes,
    I’d build a family of snow people,
    set them around a dinner table
    and give them long wooden spoons,
    and the only way they’d be able to eat,
    would be to feed each other.

    (Long spoon allegory from Rabbi Haim of Romshishok)

  9. Pingback: Thankfulness | Vivinfrance's Blog

  10. Pingback: Beads of Gratitude and a Chain of Thanks | Two Voices, One Song

  11. A Young Poet In Her 38th Year
    By: Meena Rose

    Mind, now work as well as you can;
    Let your right be fused with your left;
    This is your chance to break that dam and
    Break the walls of morbid rationale.

    Heart, yours has been an uphill battle;
    I have lost my right to ask more of you;
    You gifted me empathy nonpareil and
    I locked it up in a box – afraid.

    Soul, yours is a story of stubbornness;
    Resilience as it is known in some other circles;
    Giving up is a foreign notion to you;
    So is throwing in the towel and surrendering.

    Yet, in the end, or was it in the beginning;
    In this circle of a life, I have no clue
    Where to start and where to end but at my
    Origin, I had already surrendered.

    Thirty eight years it took for me to learn
    That I will always rise to your call;
    A sister in faith in this brotherhood of man;
    My curse is suddenly my gift.

    My life, it has turned upside down or
    Is that right side up? Reference points
    Shift with time mocking our need for
    Absolutes – the way points of mankind.

    In a world that has highly evolved its
    Shades of gray and reduced plausible
    Discernment, I am grateful, no joyously
    Thankful, that I can navigate in this

    Topsy turvy life and still find myself
    Moving undeniably forward towards a
    Shimmering horizon that stays barely
    Within sight – heart, mind and soul,

    My tireless guides – I thank you for
    Your service and your conviction
    That I am still worth the fight;
    Thirty eight years have taught me

    That promises are hard to keep;
    Desire, a motivator that operates
    In fits and starts, is unreliable;
    Solitude can be tricky, an echo

    Chamber, a hall of mirrors,
    A sense projector – a powerful
    Messaging platform but who’s
    Running the show?

    Every night, I lay down and wonder,
    Am I doing it right? Am I generating
    A return on that celestial investment?
    At the nexus of stillness where my

    Breath is withdrawn and the cosmos
    Exhales, I catch the scented hint of
    A whispered answer – a Yugen;
    A wellspring of warmth bubbles and froths

    Sending lava flows of unrelenting love;
    The Zamboni machine of life, it’s heat
    Smooths over wear and tear restoring
    A blessed sheen to one exhausted poet.

  12. “Not enough”

    For the harrowing tales he tells
    of scaling superman heights in
    rain and sleet and heat For the
    blood he sheds while laboring

    under sheet rock, shingles and
    salz-alls that wail far into the
    night For his cracked scarred
    hands and grease packed nails.

    For the grace he shows while
    I skitter my time curled into
    the artsy fartsy world of words.
    For Sunday drives and coffee

    and Autumn bonfires For this
    home For our Family For his
    sacrifice, my tender thanks

    is not enough.

  13. Pingback: Deeply Appreciative | Metaphors and Smiles

  14. Deeply Appreciative
    For eyes
    and operating
    I hold
    awe for all
    inner workings-
    miles of veins
    and ventricles,
    pounds of bones
    and muscles,
    rivers of flowing
    fluid and energy.
    This intricateness,
    this recipe
    this miracle
    that is me…
    For this gift
    I’m grateful.
    For opportunity
    of breath-
    I’m thoroughly thankful.
    Copyright © Hannah Gosselin 2013

  15. No Such Thing

    There’s no such thing as
    an ex-Marine.
    Once a Marine always a Marine.
    I don’t know if you can live
    in America and have never
    heard those expressions.

    It is something that changes
    you forever. You may
    remove the uniform, but you
    can never remove what’s
    in your heart.
    And I am thankful for that.

    But how about this? There’s
    no such thing as an ex-mom.
    Having carried that child in
    your womb changes you forever.
    No matter if she grows to
    have children of her own,

    or disowns you, or you decide
    you must surrender him for
    adoption, that child carries
    you in their body, affects
    those around them, can change
    the history of the world.

    Nothing can make that go
    away. Ever. Once your children
    move on with their lives, you
    will find yourself adjusting
    a young mans collar, or tucking
    in the tag on the lady’s dress.

    “It’s just the mother in me,”
    you say. You still sleep with
    one ear open to the sounds
    of the night. Are there any
    sounds in your world that
    don’t belong? You’ll hear them.

    Even if you couldn’t have a
    child of your own, so you adopted,
    or provided foster care, you
    will never be the same. Those
    children will never be the same.
    You have left your mark on them.

    I carry my mother in me, just
    as my children carry me within
    themselves. That is the way
    of the Universe.
    Once a mom, always a mom.
    And I am thankful for that.

    Ellen Knight 11.24.13
    write a “thankful” poem for PB

  16. Old Thanksgivings

    By David De Jong

    Thankful memories of thankful prayers
    Gathered round on kitchen chairs
    Pheasant, rabbit, a chicken or two
    Store bought turkey – just wouldn’t do

    Four boys, sis, and dad walked the fields
    On the hunt, Thanksgiving’s morn yield
    Frosty ground, corn-field’s ambience
    Hearts against nature, renaissance

    Old Duke, Remington, begged to sing
    Harvest taken on foot and wing
    Mom cooked it all with loving care
    Our traditional, Thanksgiving Day fare

    We gave thanks for family, we gave thanks for friends
    We gave thanks for bits of change, mom let us spend
    Old handed down clothes, she always had to mend
    Her knitted socks and mittens, shielded winter winds
    Nothing went to waste, or it was blatant sin

    We laughed, we played, our hearts just danced
    So rich with joy, no happenstance
    Love our bounty, our souls – romanced

    • You sparked a lot of memories for me. Thanksgiving morning was always jump-started by the hunters and yoting dogs. That fare was always for later…or not at all, depending on the hunters. Sometimes they just wanted to walk the fields and forest and listen to the dogs. This is a lovely reminiscence.

  17. O Lord, When Life Hurts…thank You

    that I can cast my cares on You.
    You are the Faithful One,
    the One Who never needs to change
    but Who has the power to change
    both those who ask and
    those who do not ask but should.

    Thank You for your grace and mercy.

  18. Thankful

    How could I not be thankful
    For all that I have and have not
    How could I neglect the Giver
    He’s given me all that I’ve got
    And how could I ever repay Him
    His kindness goes beyond my needs
    For the Great Provider loves me
    To the point where His bounty exceeds

    He asks so little in exchange
    I need just to return His love
    For that the rewards are great
    Sent down from Heaven above

    Thank You, Lord
    For Your Son
    For Your grace
    For Your forgiveness
    For Your salvation
    And for Your Love

    © 2013 Earl Parsons

  19. The Poet’s Prayer

    Father God, I pray to You
    To thank You for the things You do.
    For all the blessing You afford,
    And every breath You give me, Lord.

    I thank You now, especially
    For all the words you give to me.
    The verses I’m allowed to pen.
    The words that rhyme again and again.

    The lines that always seem to fit.
    The occasional touches of humor and wit.
    You give me more than I deserve
    And I thank you for the chance to serve

    I pray, Lord, that I’ll never tire
    Of writing that which You desire
    Your poetic servant I will be
    From now until eternity.

    So use me, Lord, to do your will
    To change lives with Your words until
    There’s nothing more You wish to say.
    In Jesus precious name, I pray.


    (c) 2001 Earl Parsons

  20. A Poetic Hug

    Though we have never met,
    there is a silver thread
    like a spider’s web
    that connects us all,
    through states and countries,
    drawing us in, letting us feel
    that we may express
    our deepest sorrows or
    greatest joys within
    our writing, our communal
    love of poetry, creating a work
    of words, trusting each other
    enough to share. We dare
    to put ourselves out there.
    So, I give my special thanks
    to all of you Poetic Bloomers;
    I’m proud to be among your ranks.

  21. No Reason

    Just think: you are
    Young, alive, well, breathing –
    What reason have you to not be

    © Copyright Erin Kay Hope – 2013

    Yesterday was rough. Everything sad or regretted in my life just seemed to come back to me and slap me in the face. I definitely was not feeling thankful when I saw this prompt… So glad today was Sunday, though! 🙂

  22. Mysterious Woman of Thursday

    I once saw a woman
    In my dreams…

    Who was sweet like candy
    With lips of lemon-lime
    Until I turned again
    And looked a second time

    She had dreadlocks like
    Cooked strips of bacon
    Dripping hot grease down
    To the edge of her feet

    A pendant of liver
    Toxic with onion
    Hung from her neck
    Earrings of less bling

    Her ears two humble slices
    Of plump pumpkin pie
    Perfumed sky with pleasing

    Her corny cutie toes
    Slimmed in select rows
    Of cold cut cucumbers
    And carrots

    She was dressed
    Like a turkey
    but it was hard to tell
    Looking like hell
    Baked in a pan at 450 degrees

    She rolled up both sleeves
    Exposing her macaroni elbows
    Soft dripping with cheese

    She slipped and hit her head
    Profusely bled sweetened
    Rich cranberry sauce

    Suffered multiple fractures
    The surgeon had to break off
    Both legs but he said it must be
    The season

    So they buttered her bed
    On a soft layer of mashed potatoes
    Covered her in a thin sheet of gravy and gave thanks

  23. Marie and Bill, love your poems today. I’ll be back later to read. Long day.

    A Kind of Thankfulness

    How wondrous, like a chickadee,
    to spend life praising air and tree,
    to know that something large and fair
    looks out for small things everywhere.

  24. Change at St. Paul’s

    I sat there at a lowest point
    letting the choral voices soar
    up to high arches, echo there,
    then drop like blessings
    on my head. Around me
    tourists, homeless, all
    came from the streets
    to bend a knee, to listen
    to sweet harmony, to pray
    for change, a sign, a call,
    a hope that life might better be.

    Sometimes I don’t know
    what to say, what words
    can mend a broken life.
    And so I just said,
    Thank you, Lord,
    forgive me, help me,
    take what’s yours.

    I listened as the chorus sang;
    those notes so lightly
    took to air, and felt
    my own song’s stir
    and flight, and
    in my journal
    I wrote there,
    Let my whole life
    a prayer.

  25. Mama’s Thanksgiving Retrospective

    “We didn’t have all we wanted,
    but everything we needed.
    We had five children,
    all of them healthy,
    nobody an imbecile
    or in prison.
    I reckon we
    did OK.

  26. You Never, I Never

    I found your small notebook today:
    You had the weirdest, cutest way
    Of writing; your jumbled, scrawled hand
    Is so recognizable and
    I miss it so…hey, I bet you
    Never thought I’d be writing bout you
    Cause you’re gone…yeah, neither did I,
    Bet you never thought that my eyes
    Would be full of tears just thinking
    Bout you…neither did I…growing
    Up we weren’t scared of dying, we
    Took things in our stride…I can see,
    Through the tears, that you hardly wrote
    Anything here: two little notes;
    Writing wasn’t your thing, was it?
    Bet you never thought that I’d get
    All teary over your silly
    Little notes unexpectedly
    Found lying here…neither did I…
    But sometimes I just have to cry…
    And I realize how very glad
    I am, how thankful to have had
    You, even for such a short time,
    So painful, so full of love…I’m
    Fully convinced still that God knew
    What he was doing when He made you
    And when He took you, although I
    Still don’t know, and that’s why I cry…

    © Copyright Erin Kay Hope

    I realize this doesn’t go with the prompt, I just had to write this down. I did find his notebook today and I guess my emotions just ran away with me. I’m going through some rough things right now, so please bear with me for now…


    for the music
    in raindrops on the awning,
    of cats mewing in secret code,
    from dogs engaged in play,

    for the seasons:
    buds peeping out in springtime,
    sand between my toes in summer,
    autumn hues, winter snows.

    for the laughter
    in the comfort of friendship,
    for the love of my family,
    and for knowing pure joy.

    for the blessings
    that come when least expected,
    given to one so unworthy
    and so freely given.

    © Susan Schoeffield

  28. Fool’s Journey

    It makes sense to give my thanks
    for the song that’s sung
    and the dance that’s danced,
    for the judgment passed
    and the souls reborn,
    for each lucent child
    on a unicorn,
    for my shadowed self
    with the silent shame
    and the unsure path
    traveled all the same,
    for each seed which bloomed
    on the thirsty soil
    on which wicked rooks
    were by lightning foiled,
    for my fears flown
    and my chains unbound,
    for the cravings lost
    and the temperance found,
    for the way all things
    which begin must end,
    for the lines of death
    which through life transcend,
    for the time to act
    and the time to wait,
    for the letting go
    of the reins of fate,
    for the search for truth
    and the balanced scales,
    for the words which cut
    through mendacious tales,
    for the tides that crest
    and the tides that wane,
    for the guiding light
    on a lonely lane,
    for the faith to tread
    in the lion’s den
    and to steer on course
    with the wisest men,
    for the paths we choose
    and the friends we keep,
    for the arms entwined
    in a twilight sleep,
    for the tales one crafts
    and the rules one makes –
    what tradition builds
    and what science breaks,
    for my father’s strength
    and his guiding hands,
    for my mother’s love
    of our obscure lands,
    for the things I knew
    without having seen
    and the dreams in which
    wisdom lies to glean,
    for great things to build
    and new skills to learn,
    for fresh wonders wrought
    and the smiles well-earned,
    for not knowing well
    who I was inside,
    when I laid concealed
    with my soul untried,
    for that one misstep
    which has brought me here,
    I give thanks, My Lord,
    and I persevere.

    © Andra-Teodora Negroiu, 2013

  29. I know this isn’t new, but does say what I’m feeling this year…

    Thanks be to the Faithful

    Every time I return from yet
    another sojourn
    to the great beyond,
    An increasingly unknowable place
    That grows ever more difficult to describe
    And even more challenging to articulate

    Without exception, without fail
    I am always warmly welcomed back
    Embraced by a group of friends,
    the nucleus of which
    is such that I know not how to classify,
    categorize, or in any way explain

    Such exceptional people,
    I am certain,
    are as rare as true love
    And just as precious
    if not even more so
    People – friends, of whom
    I know I am unworthy
    Yet feel incredibly blessed
    to have in my life.

    When I finally soar back into their lives,
    as if on the wings of some recalcitrant
    —or at least at last, forgiving angel—
    There are never any recriminations,
    nor the slightest whiff of disapproval
    and not a hint of disappointment.

    If any of these, feel any of that
    they are incredibly careful
    to keep such feelings
    expressly well-hidden, from me.
    Their love and acceptance seems,
    and after years of experience, I believe is,
    truly unconditional.

    So – no matter how long my
    fickle health has me
    go to ground
    Or, contrarily provokes
    months of behaviour so bizarre
    My family must crave disowning me
    This company, never intrusively,
    always reassuringly, but really – just there
    Lets me know throughout all the
    shades and vagaries that
    make up my shredded life:
    I am loved, I am treasured,
    I am valued beyond all measure and—

    When I am so inclined
    or my demons at last
    let loose their surly bonds
    No matter should it take
    a million untold days
    My band of allies
    will still be there for me
    Eager, nay, impatient
    to help pick up the ruined threads
    That link the fragile web of my existence
    to the weft and weave of theirs
    and to carry on as if uninterrupted…

    We continue
    Their strength becomes
    My strength, at least
    For a time
    and I know,
    I do, I am so very blessed.


  30. Pingback: Thanksgiving Pi(ku) | echoes from the silence

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