Happy Thanksgiving... It's time to love!



The Pilgrims made seven times more graves than huts. No Americans have been more impoverished than these who, nevertheless, set aside a day of thanksgiving. ~H.U. Westermayer



If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, “thank you,” that would suffice. ~Meister Eckhart

Thanksgiving Day is a jewel, to set in the hearts of honest men; but be careful that you do not take the day, and leave out the gratitude. ~E.P. Powell

So once in every year we throng Upon a day apart, To praise the Lord with feast and song In thankfulness of heart. ~Arthur Guiterman
 


Good morning... have a nice day!!







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Poems for Thanksgiving Day: The Pumpkin


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by John Greenleaf Whittier (1850)
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Oh, greenly and fair in the lands of the sun,
The vines of the gourd and the rich melon run,
And the rock and the tree and the cottage enfold,
With broad leaves all greenness and blossoms all gold,
Like that which o’er Nineveh’s prophet once grew,
While he waited to know that his warning was true,
And longed for the storm-cloud, and listened in vain
For the rush of the whirlwind and red fire-rain.

On the banks of the Xenil the dark Spanish maiden
Comes up with the fruit of the tangled vine laden;
And the Creole of Cuba laughs out to behold
Through orange-leaves shining the broad spheres of gold;
Yet with dearer delight from his home in the North,
On the fields of his harvest the Yankee looks forth,
Where crook-necks are coiling and yellow fruit shines,
And the sun of September melts down on his vines.

Ah! on Thanksgiving day, when from East and from West,
From North and from South comes the pilgrim and guest;
When the gray-haired New Englander sees round his board
The old broken links of affection restored;
When the care-wearied man seeks his mother once more,
And the worn matron smiles where the girl smiled before;
What moistens the lip and what brightens the eye,
What calls back the past, like the rich Pumpkin pie?

Oh, fruit loved of boyhood! the old days recalling,
When wood-grapes were purpling and brown nuts were falling!
When wild, ugly faces we carved in its skin,
Glaring out through the dark with a candle within!
When we laughed round the corn-heap, with hearts all in tune,
Our chair a broad pumpkin, — our lantern the moon,
Telling tales of the fairy who travelled like steam
In a pumpkin-shell coach, with two rats for her team!

Then thanks for thy present! none sweeter or better
E’er smoked from an oven or circled a platter!
Fairer hands never wrought at a pastry more fine,
Brighter eyes never watched o’er its baking, than thine!
And the prayer, which my mouth is too full to express,
Swells my heart that thy shadow may never be less,
That the days of thy lot may be lengthened below,
And the fame of thy worth like a pumpkin-vine grow,
And thy life be as sweet, and its last sunset sky
Golden-tinted and fair as thy own Pumpkin pie!

Thanksgiving


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by Ella Wheeler Wilcox (1896)

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We walk on starry fields of white    

And do not see the daisies; 

For blessings common in our sight    

We rarely offer praises. 

We sigh for some supreme delight    

To crown our lives with splendor, 

And quite ignore our daily store    

Of pleasures sweet and tender.
Our cares are bold and push their way    

Upon our thought and feeling. 

They hang about us all the day,    

Our time from pleasure stealing. 

So unobtrusive many a joy    

We pass by and forget it, 

But worry strives to own our lives    

And conquers if we let it.


There’s not a day in all the year   

But holds some hidden pleasure, 

And looking back, joys oft appear    

To brim the past’s wide measure. 

But blessings are like friends, I hold,    

Who love and labor near us. 

We ought to raise our notes of praise    

While living hearts can hear us.


Full many a blessing wears the guise    

Of worry or of trouble. 

Farseeing is the soul and wise    

Who knows the mask is double. 

But he who has the faith and strength    

To thank his God for sorrow 

Has found a joy without alloy    

To gladden every morrow.


We ought to make the moments notes    

Of happy, glad Thanksgiving; 

The hours and days a silent phrase    

Of music we are living. 

And so the theme should swell and grow    

As weeks and months pass o’er us, 

And rise sublime at this good time,    

A grand Thanksgiving chorus.

Poem for Thanksgiving Day: "One Day is there of the Series"

Emily Dickinson

One Day is there of the Series
Termed Thanksgiving Day.
Celebrated part at Table
Part in Memory.

Neither Patriarch nor Pussy
I dissect the Play
Seems it to my Hooded thinking
Reflex Holiday.

Had there been no sharp Subtraction
From the early Sum —
Not an Acre or a Caption
Where was once a Room —

Not a Mention, whose small Pebble
Wrinkled any Sea,
Unto Such, were such Assembly
’Twere Thanksgiving Day.


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The pure contralto sings in the organ loft (Thanksgiving Day)


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from Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman (1900)
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The pure contralto sings in the organ loft;
The carpenter dresses his plank—the tongue of his foreplane whistles its wild ascending lisp;
The married and unmarried children ride home to their Thanksgiving dinner;
The pilot seizes the king-pin—he heaves down with a strong arm;
The mate stands braced in the whale-boat—lance and harpoon are ready;
The duck-shooter walks by silent and cautious stretches;
The deacons are ordain’d with cross’d hands at the altar;
The spinning-girl retreats and advances to the hum of the big wheel;
The farmer stops by the bars, as he walks on a First-day loafe, and looks at the oats and rye;
The lunatic is carried at last to the asylum, a confirm’d case,
(He will never sleep any more as he did in the cot in his mother’s bed-room;)
The jour printer with gray head and gaunt jaws works at his case,
He turns his quid of tobacco, while his eyes blurr with the manuscript;
The malform’d limbs are tied to the surgeon’s table,
What is removed drops horribly in a pail;
The quadroon girl is sold at the auction-stand—the drunkard nods by the bar-room stove;
The machinist rolls up his sleeves—the policeman travels his beat—the gate-keeper marks who pass;
The young fellow drives the express-wagon—(I love him, though I do not know him;)
The half-breed straps on his light boots to complete in the race;
The western turkey-shooting draws old and young—some lean on their rifles, some sit on logs,
Out from the crowd steps the marksman, takes his position, levels his piece;
The groups of newly-come immigrants cover the wharf or levee;
As the woolly-pates hoe in the sugar-field, the overseer views them from his saddle;
The bugle calls in the ball-room, the gentlemen run for their partners, the dancers bow to each other;
The youth lies awake in the cedar-roof’d garret, and harks to the musical rain;
The Wolverine sets traps on the creek that helps fill the Huron;
The squaw, wrapt in her yellow-hemm’d cloth, is offering moccasins and bead-bags for sale;
The connoisseur peers along the exhibition-gallery with half-shut eyes bent sideways;
As the deck-hands make fast the steamboat, the plank is thrown for the shore-going passengers;
The young sister holds out the skein, while the elder sister winds it off in a ball, and stops now and then for the knots;
The one-year wife is recovering and happy, having a week ago borne her first child;
The clean-hair’d Yankee girl works with her sewing-machine, or in the factory or mill;
The nine months’ gone is in the parturition chamber, her faintness and pains are advancing;
The paving-man leans on his two-handed rammer—the reporter’s lead flies swiftly over the note-book—the sign-painter is lettering with red and gold;
The canal boy trots on the tow-path—the book-keeper counts at his desk—the shoemaker waxes his thread;
The conductor beats time for the band, and all the performers follow him;
The child is baptized—the convert is making his first professions;
The regatta is spread on the bay—the race is begun—how the white sails sparkle!
The drover, watching his drove, sings out to them that would stray;
The pedler sweats with his pack on his back, (the purchaser higgling about the odd cent;)
The camera and plate are prepared, the lady must sit for her daguerreotype;
The bride unrumples her white dress, the minute-hand of the clock moves slowly;
The opium-eater reclines with rigid head and just-open’d lips;
The prostitute draggles her shawl, her bonnet bobs on her tipsy and pimpled neck;
The crowd laugh at her blackguard oaths, the men jeer and wink to each other;
(Miserable! I do not laugh at your oaths, nor jeer you;)
The President, holding a cabinet council, is surrounded by the Great Secretaries;
On the piazza walk three matrons stately and friendly with twined arms;
The crew of the fish-smack pack repeated layers of halibut in the hold;
The Missourian crosses the plains, toting his wares and his cattle;
As the fare-collector goes through the train, he gives notice by the jingling of loose change;
The floor-men are laying the floor—the tinners are tinning the roof—the masons are calling for mortar;
In single file, each shouldering his hod, pass onward the laborers;
Seasons pursuing each other, the indescribable crowd is gather’d—it is the Fourth of Seventh-month—(What salutes of cannon and small arms!)
Seasons pursuing each other, the plougher ploughs, the mower mows, and the winter-grain falls in the ground;
Off on the lakes the pike-fisher watches and waits by the hole in the frozen surface;
The stumps stand thick round the clearing, the squatter strikes deep with his axe;
Flatboatmen make fast, towards dusk, near the cottonwood or pekan-trees;
Coon-seekers go through the regions of the Red river, or through those drain’d by the Tennessee, or through those of the Arkansaw;
Torches shine in the dark that hangs on the Chattahoochee or Altamahaw;
Patriarchs sit at supper with sons and grandsons and great-grandsons around them;
In walls of adobie, in canvas tents, rest hunters and trappers after their day’s sport;
The city sleeps, and the country sleeps;
The living sleep for their time, the dead sleep for their time;
The old husband sleeps by his wife, and the young husband sleeps by his wife;
And these one and all tend inward to me, and I tend outward to them;
And such as it is to be of these, more or less, I am.

A Thanksgiving Poem


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- from Lyrics of Sunshine and Shadow by Paul Laurence Dunbar (1905)


The sun hath shed its kindly light,
Our harvesting is gladly o’er,
Our fields have felt no killing blight,
Our bins are filled with goodly store.

From pestilence, fire, flood, and sword
We have been spared by thy decree,
And now with humble hearts, O Lord,
We come to pay our thanks to thee.

We feel that had our merits been
The measure of thy gifts to us,
We erring children, born of sin,
Might not now be rejoicing thus.

No deed of ours hath brought us grace;
When thou wert nigh our sight was dull,
We hid in trembling from thy face,
But thou, O God, wert merciful.

Thy mighty hand o’er all the land
Hath still been open to bestow
Those blessings which our wants demand
From heaven, whence all blessings flow.

Thou hast, with ever watchful eye,
Looked down on us with holy care,
And from thy storehouse in the sky
Hast scattered plenty everywhere.

Then lift we up our songs of praise
To thee, O Father, good and kind;
To thee we consecrate our days;
Be thine the temple of each mind.

With incense sweet our thanks ascend;
Before thy works our powers pall;
Though we should strive years without end,
We could not thank thee for them all.

The Thanksgivings


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translated from a traditional Iroquois song by Harriet Maxwell Converse (1908)


We who are here present thank the Great Spirit that we are here to praise Him.
We thank Him that He has created men and women, and ordered that these beings shall always be living to multiply the earth.
We thank Him for making the earth and giving these beings its products to live on.
We thank Him for the water that comes out of the earth and runs for our lands.
We thank Him for all the animals on the earth.
We thank Him for certain timbers that grow and have fluids coming from them for us all.
We thank Him for the branches of the trees that grow shadows for our shelter.
We thank Him for the beings that come from the west, the thunder and lightning that water the earth.
We thank Him for the light which we call our oldest brother, the sun that works for our good.
We thank Him for all the fruits that grow on the trees and vines.
We thank Him for his goodness in making the forests, and thank all its trees.
We thank Him for the darkness that gives us rest, and for the kind Being of the darkness that gives us light, the moon.
We thank Him for the bright spots in the skies that give us signs, the stars.
We give Him thanks for our supporters, who had charge of our harvests.
We give thanks that the voice of the Great Spirit can still be heard through the words of Ga-ne-o-di-o.
We thank the Great Spirit that we have the privilege of this pleasant occasion.
We give thanks for the persons who can sing the Great Spirit's music, and hope they will be privileged to continue in his faith.
We thank the Great Spirit for all the persons who perform the ceremonies on this occasion.

Thanksgiving Song


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from Happy Jack by Thornton W. Burgess (1918)



Thanksgiving comes but once a year,


But when it comes it brings good cheer.


For in my storehouse on this day


Are piles of good things hid away.


Each day I’ve worked from early morn


To gather acorns, nuts, and corn,


Till now I’ve plenty and to spare


Without a worry or a care.


So light of heart the whole day long,


I’ll sing a glad Thanksgiving song.

Thanksgiving


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by Kate Seymour Maclean (1880)
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The Autumn hills are golden at the top,
   And rounded as a poet’s silver rhyme;
The mellow days are ruby ripe, that drop
   One after one into the lap of time.

Dead leaves are reddening in the woodland copse,
   And forest boughs a fading glory wear;
No breath of wind stirs in their hazy tops,
   Silence and peace are brooding everywhere.

The long day of the year is almost done,
   And nature in the sunset musing stands,
Gray-robed, and violet-hooded like a nun,
   Looking abroad o’er yellow harvest lands:

O’er tents of orchard boughs, and purple vines
   With scarlet flecked, flung like broad banners out
Along the field paths where slow-pacing lines
   Of meek-eyed kine obey the herdboy’s shout;

Where the tired ploughman his dun oxen turns,
   Unyoked, afield, mid dewy grass to stray,
While over all the village church spire burns—
   A shaft of flame in the last beams of day.

Empty and folded are her busy hands;
   Her corn and wine and oil are safely stored,
As in the twilight of the year she stands,
   And with her gladness seems to thank the Lord.

Thus let us rest awhile from toil and care,
   In the sweet sabbath of this autumn calm,
And lift our hearts to heaven in grateful prayer,
   And sing with nature our thanksgiving psalm.

Poems for Thanksgiving Day: Over the River and Through the Wood


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by Lydia Maria Child (1844)
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Over the river, and through the wood,
to Grandfather’s house we go;
the horse knows the way to carry the sleigh
through the white and drifted snow.

Over the river, and through the wood,
to Grandfather’s house away!
We would not stop for doll or top,
for ’tis Thanksgiving Day.

Over the river, and through the wood—
oh, how the wind does blow!
It stings the toes and bites the nose,
as over the ground we go.

Over the river, and through the wood.
with a clear blue winter sky,
The dogs do bark and the children hark,
as we go jingling by.

Over the river, and through the wood,
to have a first-rate play.
Hear the bells ring, “Ting a ling ding!”
Hurray for Thanskgiving Day!

Over the river, and through the wood—
no matter for winds that blow;
Or if we get the sleigh upset
into a bank of snow.

Over the river, and through the wood,
to see little John and Ann;
We will kiss them all, and play snowball
and stay as long as we can.

Over the river, and through the wood,
trot fast my dapple gray!
Spring over the ground like a hunting-hound!
For ’tis Thanksgiving Day.

Over the river, and through the wood
and straight through the barnyard gate.
We seem to go extremely slow—
it is so hard to wait!

Over the river, and through the wood—
Old Jowler hears our bells;
He shakes his paw with a loud bow-wow,
and thus the news he tells.

Over the river, and through the wood—
when Grandmother sees us come,
She will say, “O, dear, the children are here,
bring pie for everyone.”

Over the river, and through the wood—
now Grandmother’s cap I spy!
Hurrah for the fun! Is the pudding done?
Hurrah for the pumpkin pie!

Love is friendship, friendship is love!

Christmas Trees


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Robert Frost (1920)
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(A Christmas Circular Letter)

The city had withdrawn into itself
And left at last the country to the country;
When between whirls of snow not come to lie
And whirls of foliage not yet laid, there drove
A stranger to our yard, who looked the city,
Yet did in country fashion in that there
He sat and waited till he drew us out
A-buttoning coats to ask him who he was.
He proved to be the city come again
To look for something it had left behind
And could not do without and keep its Christmas.
He asked if I would sell my Christmas trees;
My woods—the young fir balsams like a place
Where houses all are churches and have spires.
I hadn’t thought of them as Christmas Trees.
I doubt if I was tempted for a moment
To sell them off their feet to go in cars
And leave the slope behind the house all bare,
Where the sun shines now no warmer than the moon.
I’d hate to have them know it if I was.
Yet more I’d hate to hold my trees except
As others hold theirs or refuse for them,
Beyond the time of profitable growth,
The trial by market everything must come to.
I dallied so much with the thought of selling.
Then whether from mistaken courtesy
And fear of seeming short of speech, or whether
From hope of hearing good of what was mine, I said,
“There aren’t enough to be worth while.”
“I could soon tell how many they would cut,
You let me look them over.”

“You could look.
But don’t expect I’m going to let you have them.”
Pasture they spring in, some in clumps too close
That lop each other of boughs, but not a few
Quite solitary and having equal boughs
All round and round. The latter he nodded “Yes” to,
Or paused to say beneath some lovelier one,
With a buyer’s moderation, “That would do.”
I thought so too, but wasn’t there to say so.
We climbed the pasture on the south, crossed over,
And came down on the north. He said, “A thousand.”

“A thousand Christmas trees!—at what apiece?”

He felt some need of softening that to me:
“A thousand trees would come to thirty dollars.”

Then I was certain I had never meant
To let him have them. Never show surprise!
But thirty dollars seemed so small beside
The extent of pasture I should strip, three cents
(For that was all they figured out apiece),
Three cents so small beside the dollar friends
I should be writing to within the hour
Would pay in cities for good trees like those,
Regular vestry-trees whole Sunday Schools
Could hang enough on to pick off enough.
A thousand Christmas trees I didn’t know I had!
Worth three cents more to give away than sell,
As may be shown by a simple calculation.
Too bad I couldn’t lay one in a letter.
I can’t help wishing I could send you one,
In wishing you herewith a Merry Christmas.

Christmas Poems: The Magi


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William Butler Yeats (1916)

Now as at all times I can see in the mind’s eye,
In their stiff, painted clothes, the pale unsatisfied ones
Appear and disappear in the blue depth of the sky
With all their ancient faces like rain-beaten stones,
And all their helms of silver hovering side by side,
And all their eyes still fixed, hoping to find once more,
Being by Calvary’s turbulence unsatisfied,
The uncontrollable mystery on the bestial floor.

Christmas Poems: The Oxen


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Thomas Hardy (1915)
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Christmas Eve, and twelve of the clock.
“Now they are all on their knees,”
An elder said as we sat in a flock
By the embers in hearthside ease.

We pictured the meek mild creatures where
They dwelt in their strawy pen.
Nor did it occur to one of us there
To doubt they were kneeling then.

So fair a fancy few believe
In these years! Yet, I feel,
If someone said on Christmas Eve
“Come; see the oxen kneel

“In the lonely barton by yonder comb
Our childhood used to know,”
I should go with him in the gloom,
Hoping it might be so.

Christmas Poems: "Mistletoe"


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Walter de la Mare (1913)
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Sitting under the mistletoe
(Pale-green, fairy mistletoe),
One last candle burning low,
All the sleepy dancers gone,
Just one candle burning on,
Shadows lurking everywhere:
Some one came, and kissed me there.

Tired I was; my head would go
Nodding under the mistletoe
(Pale-green, fairy mistletoe),
No footsteps came, no voice, but only,
Just as I sat there, sleepy, lonely,
Stooped in the still and shadowy air
Lips unseen—and kissed me there.

Christmas Carol


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Sara Teasdale (1911)
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The kings they came from out the south,
All dressed in ermine fine;
They bore Him gold and chrysoprase,
And gifts of precious wine.

The shepherds came from out the north,
Their coats were brown and old;
They brought Him little new-born lambs--
They had not any gold.

The wise men came from out the east,
And they were wrapped in white;
The star that led them all the way
Did glorify the night.

The angels came from heaven high,
And they were clad with wings;
And lo, they brought a joyful song
The host of heaven sings.

The kings they knocked upon the door,
The wise men entered in,
The shepherds followed after them
To hear the song begin.

The angels sang through all the night
Until the rising sun,
But little Jesus fell asleep
Before the song was done.

A Christmas Carol


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G.K. Chesterton (1900)
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The Christ-child lay on Mary’s lap,
His hair was like a light.
(O weary, weary were the world,
But here is all aright.)

The Christ-child lay on Mary’s breast
His hair was like a star.
(O stern and cunning are the kings,
But here the true hearts are.)

The Christ-child lay on Mary’s heart,
His hair was like a fire.
(O weary, weary is the world,
But here the world’s desire.)

The Christ-child stood on Mary’s knee,
His hair was like a crown,
And all the flowers looked up at Him,
And all the stars looked down.

Christmas Poems: "In the Bleak Midwinter"


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Christina Rossetti (1872)
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In the bleak mid-winter
Frosty wind made moan,
Earth stood hard as iron,
Water like a stone;
Snow had fallen, snow on snow,
Snow on snow,
In the bleak mid-winter
Long ago.

Our God, Heaven cannot hold Him
Nor earth sustain;
Heaven and earth shall flee away
When He comes to reign:
In the bleak mid-winter
A stable-place sufficed
The Lord God Almighty,
Jesus Christ.

Enough for Him, whom cherubim
Worship night and day,
A breastful of milk
And a mangerful of hay;
Enough for Him, whom angels
Fall down before,
The ox and ass and camel
Which adore.

Angels and archangels
May have gathered there,
Cherubim and seraphim
Thronged the air,
But only His mother
In her maiden bliss,
Worshipped the Beloved
With a kiss.

What can I give Him,
Poor as I am?
If I were a shepherd
I would bring a lamb,
If I were a wise man
I would do my part,
Yet what I can I give Him,
Give my heart.

Christmas Bells


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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1864)
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I heard the bells on Christmas Day
Their old, familiar carols play,
    And wild and sweet
    The words repeat
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

And thought how, as the day had come,
The belfries of all Christendom
    Had rolled along
    The unbroken song
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

Till ringing, singing on its way,
The world revolved from night to day,
    A voice, a chime,
    A chant sublime
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

Then from each black, accursed mouth
The cannon thundered in the South,
    And with the sound
    The carols drowned
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

It was as if an earthquake rent
The hearth-stones of a continent,
    And made forlorn
    The households born
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

And in despair I bowed my head;
“There is no peace on earth,” I said;
    “For hate is strong,
    And mocks the song
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!”

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
“God is not dead, nor doth He sleep;
    The Wrong shall fail,
    The Right prevail,
With peace on earth, good-will to men.”

Christmas Poems: "Twas just this time"

Emily Dickinson


Twas just this time, last year, I died.
I know I heard the Corn,
When I was carried by the Farms —
It had the Tassels on —

I thought how yellow it would look —
When Richard went to mill —
And then, I wanted to get out,
But something held my will.

I thought just how Red — Apples wedged
The Stubble’s joints between —
And the Carts stooping round the fields
To take the Pumpkins in —

I wondered which would miss me, least,
And when Thanksgiving, came,
If Father’d multiply the plates —
To make an even Sum —

And would it blur the Christmas glee
My Stocking hang too high
For any Santa Claus to reach
The Altitude of me —

But this sort, grieved myself,
And so, I thought the other way,
How just this time, some perfect year —
Themself, should come to me —

Christmas in the Olden Time


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from Marmion by Sir Walter Scott (1808)
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Heap on more wood! — the wind is chill;
But let it whistle as it will,
We’ll keep our Christmas merry still.
Each age has deemed the new born year
The fittest time for festal cheer.
And well our Christian sires of old.
Loved when the year its course had rolled,
And brought blithe Christmas back again,
With all his hospitable train.
Domestic and religious rite
Gave honour to the holy night:
On Christmas eve the bells were rung;
On Christmas eve the mass was sung;
That only night, in all the year,
Saw the stoled priest the chalice rear.
The damsel donned her kirtle sheen;
The hail was dressed with holly green;
Forth to the wood did merry men go,
To gather in the mistletoe,
Then opened wide the baron’s hail
To vassal, tenant, serf, and all;
Power laid his rod of rule aside,
And ceremony doff’d his pride.
The heir, with roses in his shoes,
That night might village partner choose.
The lord, underogating, share
The vulgar game of “post and pair!”
All hailed with uncontroll’d delight
And general voice, the happy night
That to the cottage, as the crown,
Brought tidings of salvation down.
The fire with well dried logs supplied,
Went roaring up the chimney wide;
The huge hail table’s oaken face,
Scrubb’d till it shone, the day to grace,
Bore then upon: its massive board
No mark to part the squire and lord.
Then was brought in the lusty brawn,
By old, blue-coated serving-man;
Then the grim boar’s head frowned on high,
Crested with bays and rosemary.
Well can the green-garbed ranger tell,
How, when, and where, the monster fell;
What dogs before his death he tore,
And all the baiting of the boar.
The wassail round in good brown bowls,
Garnished with ribbon, blithely trowls.
There the huge sirloin reeked: hard by
Plum-porridge stood, and Christmas pie;
Nor failed old Scotland to produce
At such high tide her savoury goose.
Then came the merry masquers in,
And carols roar’d with blithesome din;
If unmelodious was the song,
It was a hearty note, and strong.
Who lists may in their mumming see
Traces of ancient mystery;
White shirts supplied the masquerade,
And smutted cheeks the visor made
But oh! what masquers, richly dight,
Can boast of bosoms half so light!
England was merry England when
Old Christmas brought his sports again.
’Twas Christmas broached the mightiest ale,
’Twas Christmas told the merriest tale;
A Christmas gambol oft would cheer
A poor man’s heart through half the year.

A Visit from St. Nicholas - Poem for Christmas


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Attributed to Clement Clark Moore (1822)
More probably written by Major Henry Livingston, Jr. (1808)


’Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there;
The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads;
And mamma in her ’kerchief, and I in my cap,
Had just settled our brains for a long winter’s nap,
When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash,
Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash.
The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow
Gave the lustre of mid-day to objects below,
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny reindeer,
With a little old driver, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment it must be St. Nick.
More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name;
“Now, Dasher! now, Dancer! now, Prancer and Vixen!
On, Comet! on, Cupid! on, Donder and Blitzen!
To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!
Now dash away! dash away! dash away all!”
As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky;
So up to the house-top the coursers they flew,
With the sleigh full of Toys, and St. Nicholas too.
And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof
The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
As I drew in my head, and was turning around,
Down the chimney St. Nicholas came with a bound.
He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,
And his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot;
A bundle of Toys he had flung on his back,
And he looked like a pedler just opening his pack.
His eyes—how they twinkled! his dimples how merry!
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!
His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow
And the beard of his chin was as white as the snow;
The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath;
He had a broad face and a little round belly,
That shook when he laughed, like a bowlful of jelly.
He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,
And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself;
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,
Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread;
He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And filled all the stockings; then turned with a jerk,
And laying his finger aside of his nose,
And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose;
He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle,
But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight,
“Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good-night.”

Christmas Poems: "CRISTMAS PRESENCE"

Christmas Presence
Oriza Martins



It's almost Christmas ...
In the loneliness of my room
I look though the foggy window:
distant lights,
distant sound of songs,
laughter, prayers, fireworks thundering in the wilderness...
Miserable, I think of those who are absent.
Cold Christmas. Sad, heartbreaking.
My gaze is lost in the darkness of the weakness
I look, but I cannot see anything:
Nothing ahead. Nothing in future ...
Why am I alone?

I look back over the past,
I recall the glorious days
Of fame, power, victory ...
Where are you, fans of yore,
Loves from green years,
Friends of all time?
I failed, you failed, we failed,
Where did we leave
Our dreams, our friendship,
Mistakes and disappointments? Suddenly… Sounds increase,
Phrases that elevate,
Laughters that fulfill,
Euphoria, hope, songs, smell of love ...
Who came? Who knocks?
Merry Christmas! I feel you have come,
You came, no, you were already here,
I just did not see,
What a joy!
You fill my Christmas
With love, light and heat!
Eternal friend, friend of all times,
You were never far, not even would be far now,
As always, you are here,
with me, Lord!
In faith, we are never alone ...
There is no better company
To be together with us
It is His birthday today!

©Oriza Martins

Inspirational, Prayers

Christmas Poems

Ceremonies for Christmas
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Robert Herrick (1648)
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    Come, bring with a noise,
    My merry, merry boys,
The Christmas log to the firing,
    While my good dame, she
    Bids ye all be free,
And drink to your heart’s desiring.

    With the last year’s brand
    Light the new block, and
For good success in his spending,
    On your psalteries play,
    That sweet luck may
Come while the log is a-teending.

    Drink now the strong beer,
    Cut the white loaf here,
The while the meat is a-shredding;
    For the rare mince-pie,
    And the plums stand by,
To fill the paste that’s a kneading.


--------------------------

The True Christmas
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Henry Vaughan (1678)
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So stick up ivy and the bays,
And then restore the heathen ways.
Green will remind you of the spring,
Though this great day denies the thing.
And mortifies the earth and all
But your wild revels, and loose hall.
Could you wear flowers, and roses strow
Blushing upon your breasts’ warm snow,
That very dress your lightness will
Rebuke, and wither at the ill.
The brightness of this day we owe
Not unto music, masque, nor show:
Nor gallant furniture, nor plate;
But to the manger’s mean estate.
His life while here, as well as birth,
Was but a check to pomp and mirth;
And all man’s greatness you may see
Condemned by His humility.
Then leave your open house and noise,
To welcome Him with holy joys,
And the poor shepherd’s watchfulness:
Whom light and hymns from heaven did bless.
What you abound with, cast abroad
To those that want, and ease your load.
Who empties thus, will bring more in;
But riot is both loss and sin.
Dress finely what comes not in sight,
And then you keep your Christmas right.

--------------------------------------
A Christmas Carol
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Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1799)
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The shepherds went their hasty way,
And found the lowly stable-shed
Where the Virgin-Mother lay:
And now they checked their eager tread,
For to the Babe, that at her bosom clung,
A Mother’s song the Virgin-Mother sung.

They told her how a glorious light,
Streaming from a heavenly throng,
Around them shone, suspending night!
While sweeter than a mother’s song,
Blest Angels heralded the Saviour’s birth,
Glory to God on high! and Peace on Earth.

She listened to the tale divine,
And closer still the Babe she pressed;
And while she cried, the Babe is mine!
The milk rushed faster to her breast:
Joy rose within her, like a summer’s morn;
Peace, Peace on Earth! the Prince of Peace is born.

Thou Mother of the Prince of Peace,
Poor, simple, and of low estate!
That strife should vanish, battle cease,
O why should this thy soul elate?
Sweet Music’s loudest note, the Poet’s story, —
Didst thou ne’er love to hear of fame and glory?

And is not War a youthful king,
A stately Hero clad in mail?
Beneath his footsteps laurels spring;
Him Earth’s majestic monarchs hail
Their friend, their playmate! and his bold bright eye
Compels the maiden’s love-confessing sigh.

“Tell this in some more courtly scene,
To maids and youths in robes of state!
I am a woman poor and mean,
And therefore is my soul elate.
War is a ruffian, all with guilt defiled,
That from the ag├ęd father tears his child!

A murderous fiend, by fiends adored,
He kills the sire and starves the son;
The husband kills, and from her board
Steals all his widow’s toil had won;
Plunders God’s world of beauty; rends away
All safety from the night, all comfort from the day.

Then wisely is my soul elate,
That strife should vanish, battle cease:
I’m poor and of a low estate,
The Mother of the Prince of Peace.
Joy rises in me, like a summer’s morn:
Peace, Peace on Earth! the Prince of Peace is born.”

Love and Jealousy (by Oriza Martins)

Love and Jealousy

Jealousy and love... complicated coexistence,
That troubles our lives,
And in our soul, the scars for disappointment.
If a little bit jealousy heats the flame
In excess this flame will certainly be spread
Dissent, disaffection, disunity.

Love means altruism,
But jealousy exceeds selfishness
That thrives in troubled hearts.
If love is based on trust,
Jealousy interrupts goodness
What brings happiness to the ones in love.

The saying goes that we shall sleep with eyes opened,
Especially when the loved one is not around,
And that we must trust... suspicious…
But to get rid of the pain of jealousy,
If we really wish to prove our love,
It is better trust... trusting!


© Oriza Martins
Trad.Daiane da Silva

The heat of spring (by Oriza Martins)

The heat of spring

Bloom the flambeaus,
Coloring the mornings,
Announcing a new age.
Spreads out beautifully
The noble mother nature:
It is the heat of spring!

Dating, the birds
Rebuild their nests,
They love themselves flying over the skies.
They are a beautiful example,
Beautifying the infinite
The offspring multiplied.

With such sky I fulfill myself
And I feel in heat
As the grass in splendor.
Following my road
I seek in a stop,
Someone to be my love!

© Oriza Martins
Trad.Daiane da Silva

Let's Talk About Love (by Oriza Martins)

Let's Talk About Love

Let's talk about love,
The faithful love of lovers,
Those who are constant
In their dedication ...
Let's talk about love
Supportive, friendship,
a factor of happiness
That strikes the heart ...


Let's talk about love
What shall unite families,
That builds wonders
Among siblings and relatives ...
Let's talk about love
The sublime love of our parents,
Which gives consolation to our woes,
That educate our minds ...

Let's talk about Love
The most pure and true
That First Love,
From Christ, Our Lord,
Eternal source of tenderness,
Love for life,
That overcomes every barrier,
The Love that comes from the Creator!


© Oriza Martins
Trad.Daiane da Silva

Hopes Swallows (by Oriza Martins)

Hopes Swallows

As a child along summers,
I used to watch the flight of the Swallows
And I saw my hopes in them
That in a golden future I envisioned...

But autumn the sky was clear:
They flew over other places,
And watching them again in dreams, mirages,
So I waited their return...

By the turning of the wheels of destiny
I moved away from those little birds,
Along the coming and going of the seasons, misfortunes...

And now I realize, amidst distress,
That hopes, as well as swallows,
Many are gone and shall never return...


© Oriza Martins
Trad.Daiane da Silva

Love Stories (by Oriza Martins)

Love Stories

What are love stories? ...
Fountains gushing out passion
Rivers in profusion
Of tears that warm,
Meeting - or mute -
Appeals from the heart ...

Weeping, phrases, emotions,
Sighs, laughter, songs,
So many ingredients! ...
Each story has its color
Its aroma, its flavor,
So different sensations! ...

Surrender without shame
With tenderness, desire,
Along adventures or in pain ...
Dive with body and mind,
Experiencing intensely
Our love stories ...

And if these love stories
bring us unpleasantness,
Let’s love in essence...
Because love ennobles us,
For Love means
The lighthouse of existence ...

Even unmatched
Must also be experienced,
Without any resentment or contempt! ...
More important is the feeling,
For what really matters
Are love stories...

© Oriza Martins
Trad.Daiane da Silva