Wednesday, November 27, 2013



by Edgar Albert Guest

Gettin’ together to smile an’ rejoice,
An’ eatin’ an’ laughin’ with folks of your choice;
An’ kissin’ the girls an’ declarin’ that they
Are growin’ more beautiful day after day;
Chattin’ an’ braggin’ a bit with the men,
Buildin’ the old family circle again;
Livin’ the wholesome an’ old-fashioned cheer,
Just for awhile at the end of the year.

Greetings fly fast as we crowd through the door
And under the old roof we gather once more
Just as we did when the youngsters were small;
Mother’s a little bit grayer, that’s all.
Father’s a little bit older, but still
Ready to romp an’ to laugh with a will.
Here we are back at the table again
Tellin’ our stories as women an’ men.

Bowed are our heads for a moment in prayer;
Oh, but we’re grateful an’ glad to be there.
Home from the east land an’ home from the west,
Home with the folks that are dearest an’ best.
Out of the sham of the cities afar
We’ve come for a time to be just what we are.
Here we can talk of ourselves an’ be frank,
Forgettin’ position an’ station an’ rank.

Give me the end of the year an’ its fun
When most of the plannin’ an’ toilin’ is done;
Bring all the wanderers home to the nest,
Let me sit down with the ones I love best,
Hear the old voices still ringin’ with song,
See the old faces unblemished by wrong,
See the old table with all of its chairs
An’ I’ll put soul in my Thanksgivin’ prayers.


Sunday, November 24, 2013

sweet solitude

Crowded places, I shunned them as noises too rude
And flew to the silence of sweet solitude.

— John Clare, "Song"

Thursday, November 21, 2013

if you think

If you think you are enlightened, go home for Thanksgiving.

― Ram Dass

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

what is, what is not

A wheel is useful because it has emptiness at its centre,
through which an axle might pass.  
A bowl is useful because it is molded around emptiness,
waiting to be filled.  
A house is useful because of its doors and windows,
that allow people to enter and live happily.  
Therefore the 'what is' is benefited by the 'what is not'.  
Each is served by the other. 

— Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching

Monday, November 11, 2013

in times when nothing stood

In times when nothing stood
but worsened, or grew strange,
there was one constant good:
             she did not change. 
— Philip Larkin, 2 March 1978

Thursday, November 7, 2013

live up to the spirit

Every day the choice is presented to us, in a thousand different ways, to live up to the spirit which is in us or to deny it. Whenever we talk about right and wrong we are turning the light of scrutiny upon our neighbors instead of upon ourselves. We judge in order not to be judged. We uphold the law, because it is easier than to defy it. 
— Henry Miller, Stand Still Like the Hummingbird, "The Immorality of Morality"

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

darkness restores

For / darkness restores what light cannot repair.

— Joseph Brodsky, from "On Love"

Saturday, November 2, 2013

too zealously

Too many parents make life hard for their children by trying, 
too zealously, to make it easy for them. 

― Johann Wolfgang von Goethe