I'm usually asked to write a poem for the family gathering whenever Dr. M and I are able to be in NC for Thanksgiving. This year's poem was extra hard to write, as one might imagine. But it's done, and since I'm scheduling this to post during our meal, I am most likely eating corn pudding and pecan pie right this very minute. And I think that makes up for a lot of the hard things that have happened during 2016, don't you?
You may not know it,
But I have vicissitudes.
I hope it’s not chronic,
But it’s a pretty serious case,
And my plate is full
Of things I’d rather not eat:
Bitterness, despair, anxiety, and Brussels sprouts
I blame those vicissitudes.
I’m looking back at the arc
Of this year and trying to find
A morsel of thanks be to God.
Was it in April when we lost Amy?
Was it in July when Mike became unemployed?
Was it this month, when Brandon shipped out,
My priest resigned,
And my candidate didn’t win the election?
Yes, yes it was.
Thanks be to God was there
On those days and all the others
Where there was joy and grief
And spreadsheets and the World Series
And your hand in mine in this circle.
You know how vicissitudes work, don’t you?
Picture a leaf, tumbling in the wind.
It goes down and up, around and around
Until it settles into
The cupped hand
Let us Bless the Lord!
(and the people said): Thanks Be To God!
Dana W. Rhyne