Thanksgiving for Two

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We had a thoroughly enjoyable, mellow Thanksgiving at home with two of our three children. Our older daughter remained in Philadelphia, where she continues to spread her wings and explore city living. This was the first year that all 5 of us weren’t gathered together for at least a portion of the day. On Facebook, my cousin posted “Holidays were much more fun when the kids were young, home safe and sound! ” I know just what she means. This was also the first year my older sister and brother-in-law had none of their four children or assorted grandchildren at home. Marjorie Saiser’s poem “Thanksgiving for Two” appeared in my Inbox and I immediately forwarded it to my sister. I also tucked it away for myself. Those days are coming faster than I may wish, but there’s solace in this poem, a loving tribute to “decades of side-by-side.” After reading it, I’m more mindful of, and thankful for, my own “great good luck.”

Thanksgiving for Two
Marjorie Saiser
The adults we call our children will not be arriving
with their children in tow for Thanksgiving.
We must make our feast ourselves,
slice our half-ham, indulge, fill our plates,
potatoes and green beans
carried to our table near the window.
We are the feast, plenty of years,
arguments. I’m thinking the whole bundle of it
rolls out like a white tablecloth. We wanted…
(click here to see the rest of the poem)
I hope you enjoyed time with family and friends at Thanksgiving. Carol is hosting Poetry Friday this week at Carol’s Corner. Make sure to stop by and stuff yourself on some poetry!

25 thoughts on “Thanksgiving for Two

  1. Growing up in Maine has a pull on many kids. They may not return to live and work and family here, but they do remember the simple joys of living in a state with a gentler rhythm. Thanksgiving becomes a time in their 30s and 40s when they are called home, if only for a weekend.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. mbhmaine says:

    I love your words, Dan–“the simple joys of living in a state with a gentler rhythm.” I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving!

    Like

  3. Irene Latham says:

    We are the feast! Our Thanksgiving was small this year, too, with the oldest and fiance off on a cruise. But we had a lovely time with the other two, and like you, I am reminding myself to be grateful for the side-by-side, and now, each moment with them feels extraordinary. We carry them with us… Happy Poetry Friday!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh, my! this poem makes me catch my breath. Yes, there is solace in it……and I feel the sadness that makes solace possible too. We are the feast….this should be read at weddings…we start out all dewey eyed and blissful not knowing that wine in juice glasses is coming and it will be enough. Thank you so much for sharing this gem today.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. carwilc says:

    Wow! This poem is breathtakingly perfect! I had dinner at a restaurant yesterday with my 83 year old mom and three of her friends, plus my sons who are 22 and 23, who ate, then quickly exited to spend time with their biological family (I adopted them at 7 and 9). All day, I kept longing for the noise and clutter of Thanksgivings past.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I like quiet holidays. They let you take time to remember all the busier ones, to appreciate the contrast. To savor every bite.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. maryleehahn says:

    The holiday has a whole different feel when you don’t have kids and there’s no one left to claim you as the kid they are missing from the table at the family home. And it’s not necessarily a bad thing, we’ve just come to this place of a quiet day that can be whatever we make of it a lot sooner than our friends with kids (and without a bit of the angst!).

    Liked by 2 people

    • mbhmaine says:

      “There’s no one left to claim you as the kid they are missing from the table…” These words are haunting me. On the other hand, I love your perspective of the holiday as a bonus quiet day that “can be whatever we make of it.” I hope you thoroughly enjoyed yours.

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  8. margaretsmn says:

    “Decades of side by side/ our great good luck.” Love this poem. I also love having adult children who made Thanksgiving this year. We were the travelers, the visitors, and it was great! So don’t worry about tomorrow. It may be wonderful, too, in its own way.

    Liked by 1 person

    • mbhmaine says:

      Glad you had a wonderful Thanksgiving, Margaret. I constantly remind myself that change is not all bad. For example, it sure is nice to have adult children who willingly help with prep and clean up 🙂

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  9. We had a small Thanksgiving too this year–one of the kids, not the other. Love the opening of this poem, “The adults we call our children..”

    Liked by 1 person

  10. lindabaie says:

    I have done different things in my life, remember fondly those huge gatherings, and one year I spent with a grandmother when my grandfather was in the hospital. It seemed so lonely, but I was glad to join her. It’s a beautiful poem, Molly, and change does happen, kids explore. You are right to be thankful for the now.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. A beautiful poem. My own children are growing up and, each year, a bit of the old way of doing things as a family falls away, replaced by new normals, and shifting sands.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. What a wonderful poem! We have been living this for a while now. The nice thing is, each celebration meal is different. Sometimes the table is full, sometimes it’s just the two of us. But that half of ham is nice too and the cleanup is much easier (got to find a bright side).

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Thanks for this poem reminding us to be in the moment and enjoy it! Our gathering was small, warm, and filled with love, thanks Molly!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. This is indeed a poem to tuck away. We enjoyed our daughter home this year, but it won’t be long before we might also enjoy Thanksgiving for Two and remember our great good luck.

    Liked by 1 person

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