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Prayer of Thanksgiving
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By Louis Gander
Other Poems by Louis Gander


PRAYER OF THANKSGIVING

The table, set with centerpiece,
fine china, silverware -
and food prepared deliciously
with tender loving care -
and hungry eye, I relish this -
this meal, my daily bread -
then fold my hands and bow my head
before my prayer is said.

I do recite it quick and slurred,
but with the best intent -
and now that grace is said and heard,
it is a blessed event.
The phrases I was taught to say
were pressed down deep in me -
but words are empty without thoughts
of pure sincerity.

Yes, just before we eat, we pray,
but there's a place so crude
which moves us closer to the truth -
that others have no food.
It haunts me as I look around, the
visions of the starved -
who wide-eyed blankly stare at me
behind my turkey, carved.

I see their bloated tummies and
the flies around their eyes.
I hear soft moans from babies lips,
the echoes of their cries.
I taste the mush that they call food.
It lingers on my breath.
I feel the tears start down my cheeks.
I smell the stench of death.

I hesitate with my first bite,
I ask myself, "Do I
really care they're teary eyed
and hungry 'til they die?"
I pray that all the "least of these"
are eating well in Heav'n.
Please help me Lord, to understand
the blessings I was giv'n.

So now when I recite my prayer,
as I sit down to feast,
I ask myself if I'm sincere
and thankful in the least.
For that's when I can hear my voice
ascending to His ear.
He knows if I speak empty words
or if I am sincere.

2012 louis gander ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
http://www.ganderpoems.org/

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Submitted: Sunday, September 23, 2012

Last Updated: Monday, September 24, 2012

About the Poet
Born in Richland Center, Wisconsin in 1954. It's the poem's message that matters- not the poet.


Other Poems by Louis Gander


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