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Tradition(s) of Thanksgiving

"Is this tracking snow?" Big, shy brown eyes
glance at cold and fluffy layering.
White, land is shrouded in surprise;
other eyes see, eagerly surveying.

Other signs of the season: in the town,
Decorations, prepared with lights.
Deer hunters, not to let us down,
before the hunt, trim for holiday nights.

Jay's raucous call, squirrels' agile swish,
stir lingering, rustling red oak leaves,
Large, keen ears inclined, catch snap or squish,
to escape danger such snow weaves.

Sparse screen, twigs, bronze-green junipers,
shelter the quarry, silent, still,
while quite another scene occurs,
in the bright, warm house atop the hill.

Bright blaze orange jackets, guns and boots,
prompt orders from women of the home.
"On Thanksgiving, it's all right if one shoots
a buck, but at dinner, Don't you roam.”

The warmth of laughing family,
boys and men, some of the women too,
join this special annual levity,
thankful hearts blend with conquest brought through.

Some big, brown eyes , the Sunday next,
tiptoe on pointed hoofs now spared,
with antlers tossed, no ill effects,
the passing danger, calmly fared.

The less unbothered buck or doe,
that graced a mantle, freezer laid by,
adds memories, fellowship and glow,
for those not venison fans, another try.

The pioneers who set the pace,
expressing for plenty, gratitude,
tradition holds through time and place ,
expressed in family, prayer, and food.

©11/20/2014 Carol Welch
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