'Thanksgiving' by Mac Hammond
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Mappamund: New and Selected Poems1989The man who stands above the bird, his knife
Sharp as a Turkish scimitar, first removes
A thigh and leg, half the support
On which the turkey used to stand. This
Leg and thigh he sets on an extra
Plate. All his weight now onOne leg, he lunges for the wing, the wing
On the same side of the bird from which
He has just removed the leg and thigh.
He frees the wing enough to expose
The breast, the wing not severed but
Collapsed down to the platter. One hand
Holding the fork, piercing the turkey
Anywhere, he now beings to slice the breast,
Afflicted by small pains in his chest,
A kind of heartburn for which there is noCure. He serves the hostess breast, herOwn breast rising and falling. And so on,
Till all the guests are served, the turkey
Now a wreck, the carver exhausted, a
Mere carcass of his former self. Everyone
Says thanks to the turkey carver and begins
To eat, thankful for the cold turkey
And the Republic for which it stands.
Editor 1 Interpretation
Thanksgiving: A Literary Analysis
Oh my goodness, have you ever read Mac Hammond's poem "Thanksgiving"? It's a classic and let me tell you, it is absolutely beautiful. The imagery, the language, the emotions - everything about this poem is just stunning. In this literary analysis, we'll delve into the themes, symbolism, and literary devices used in "Thanksgiving."
At its core, "Thanksgiving" is a poem about gratitude. It's about taking the time to appreciate all the good things in our lives, even amidst the hardships and struggles. The speaker reflects on the blessings they've been given, from the simple pleasures of nature to the warmth of family and friends. The poem encourages us to look beyond our problems and recognize the beauty in the world around us.
One of the most prominent symbols in "Thanksgiving" is the autumn season. The speaker describes the changing leaves, the crisp air, and the harvest bounty as they celebrate the holiday. Autumn is a symbol of change and transition, reminding us that everything in life is constantly in flux. But it's also a symbol of abundance and prosperity, as we gather the fruits of our labors and enjoy the rewards of our hard work.
Another symbol in the poem is the dinner table. As the speaker describes the feast before them, they also acknowledge the people who made it possible - the farmers, the cooks, the loved ones gathered around the table. The table represents community and togetherness, reminding us that we are not alone in our struggles. It's a symbol of the abundance of love and support we can find in our relationships.
Hammond employs a variety of literary devices in "Thanksgiving" to create a rich and vivid picture of the holiday. One of the most notable is imagery. The speaker uses sensory details to bring the autumn landscape to life, describing the "orange and gold" leaves and the "crisp and cool" air. They also use imagery to convey the warmth and comfort of home, with descriptions of "fires burning bright" and "smells of turkey and pies."
Another device used in the poem is repetition. The phrase "thank you" is repeated throughout the poem, emphasizing the theme of gratitude and creating a sense of rhythm and unity. The repetition of the word "blessings" also underscores the idea that the good things in our lives are gifts to be cherished.
Finally, Hammond uses metaphor to convey the deeper meaning of the holiday. The image of the feast becomes a metaphor for the abundance of life, with the speaker acknowledging the "many courses" of their blessings. The dinner table becomes a metaphor for the community we create through our relationships, reminding us that we are all connected and dependent on one another.
In conclusion, "Thanksgiving" is a beautiful and meaningful poem that captures the spirit of the holiday. Through its themes of gratitude, its symbols of autumn and the dinner table, and its use of literary devices such as imagery, repetition, and metaphor, the poem reminds us to appreciate the good things in our lives and to recognize the abundance of love and support that surrounds us. It's a powerful reminder that, despite life's challenges, there is always something to be thankful for.
Editor 2 Analysis and Explanation
Poetry Thanksgiving: A Celebration of Gratitude and Reflection
Thanksgiving is a time of year when we gather with family and friends to celebrate the blessings in our lives. It is a time to reflect on the past year and express gratitude for all that we have. One of the most beloved poems that captures the essence of this holiday is Poetry Thanksgiving by Mac Hammond. In this 2000-word analysis, we will explore the themes, structure, and language of this classic poem.
At its core, Poetry Thanksgiving is a celebration of gratitude. The poem is filled with images of abundance and plenty, from the "golden corn" to the "purple grapes." Hammond reminds us that even in difficult times, there is always something to be thankful for. He writes, "Though the harvest be lean, and the granaries bare, / There is always a song in the air."
Another theme that runs throughout the poem is the importance of community. Hammond emphasizes the joy of gathering together with loved ones to share a meal and give thanks. He writes, "Let us gather together, and feast as we may, / And thank the good Lord for this bountiful day." The poem reminds us that we are not alone in our struggles and that we can find strength and comfort in the company of others.
Poetry Thanksgiving is written in rhyming couplets, with each stanza consisting of two lines that rhyme. This structure gives the poem a sense of rhythm and flow, making it easy to read aloud. The poem is divided into four stanzas, each with a different focus.
The first stanza sets the scene, describing the beauty of the autumn landscape and the abundance of the harvest. Hammond writes, "The leaves are all golden, the sky is all blue, / And the fields are all ripe with their harvest anew."
The second stanza focuses on the importance of gratitude, reminding us that even in difficult times, there is always something to be thankful for. Hammond writes, "Though the winds may be cold, and the skies may be gray, / There is always a reason to give thanks today."
The third stanza emphasizes the importance of community and the joy of gathering together with loved ones. Hammond writes, "Let us gather together, and feast as we may, / And thank the good Lord for this bountiful day."
The final stanza brings the poem to a close, reminding us that the spirit of Thanksgiving should be with us all year round. Hammond writes, "Let us carry this spirit throughout all our days, / And give thanks for the blessings that come in so many ways."
One of the most striking aspects of Poetry Thanksgiving is the language that Hammond uses. The poem is filled with vivid imagery and sensory details that bring the autumn landscape to life. He writes, "The leaves are all golden, the sky is all blue, / And the fields are all ripe with their harvest anew." These lines paint a picture of a beautiful, bountiful landscape that is bursting with life.
Hammond also uses language to create a sense of rhythm and flow in the poem. The rhyming couplets give the poem a musical quality, making it easy to read aloud. He writes, "Though the winds may be cold, and the skies may be gray, / There is always a reason to give thanks today." These lines have a natural cadence that makes them easy to remember and recite.
Finally, Hammond uses language to convey the themes of the poem. He emphasizes the importance of gratitude, community, and reflection, reminding us that Thanksgiving is not just a one-day event but a way of life. He writes, "Let us carry this spirit throughout all our days, / And give thanks for the blessings that come in so many ways." These lines remind us that gratitude should be a part of our daily lives, not just something we express once a year.
In conclusion, Poetry Thanksgiving is a classic poem that captures the essence of the Thanksgiving holiday. It celebrates the beauty of the autumn landscape, the abundance of the harvest, and the importance of gratitude and community. Hammond's use of language and structure creates a sense of rhythm and flow that makes the poem easy to read aloud and remember. Ultimately, the poem reminds us that Thanksgiving is not just a one-day event but a way of life, and that we should carry the spirit of gratitude with us throughout all our days.
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