Poets’ Corner: Rosemerry, Attitude of Gratitude on Thanksgiving

Poets’ Corner: Rosemerry, Attitude of Gratitude on Thanksgiving

Holding Blank Score CardsYou may want to, ahem, duck the whole thing – or you can toast Thanksgiving as Turkey Day. But what’s implied by the name of the celebration is more than consumption. It’s gratitude.

According to a recent article in Time magazine, “being thankful is strongly linked with both mental and physical health – and can help relieve stress, depression and addiction, among other conditions.

The story goes on to say:

But what is gratitude? Psychologists view it as being able to maintain a world view that appreciates the positive. That may sound like optimism, but unlike simply expecting the good, “appreciation” requires recognizing that happy outcomes are not just the result of your own hard work or moral uprightness, but depend on the efforts of others and, for the more spiritually-minded, on divine providence as well.

This makes it a fundamentally social emotion: you are grateful either to other people or to some sort of higher power with whom you can communicate.

Just in time for the holiday, Word Woman Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer, a regular contributor to Telluride Inside… and Out, contributes two equally beautiful but very different poems that spin the notion of gratitude – and food and God.

The first, “Eating Beet Salad” was published in Clover, a self-described “literary rag.”

Eating Beet Salad

imageThough there are great oceans

to revere and spiraling galaxies

to venerate, there is also the humble

beet, served here sliced thin on a long white plate,

tousled with dark green arugula

and drizzled with sweet, thick balsamic.

This carpaccio could make a woman find

religion, especially when served

with a wedge of flatbread and pesto

with mascarpone. Dear God, I know

nothing about the ordering of the stars,

cannot fathom the intricate

paths in the brain, the palm, the spine,

but the beet with its rings, its red,

its stain, I can find you here, not

a god restricted to heaven, but one who understands

earth and dirt and bitterness turned sweet.

Rosemerry describes her second work flat out as a “gratitude poem.”


All of It, Every Bit


gratitudejournal-e1359688676693Tsuyu no yo wa tsuyu no yo nagara sari nagara

The world of dew —

A world of dew it is indeed,

And yet, and yet . . .



Thank you for this world of dew,

for dew enough to fill a cup,

to fill my small cup to brimming,


though some mornings all the dew’s been spilled.

It matters not the hand that spilled it,

though there is a tug toward blame.


In the story, the Hindu master pours the cup

too full, and when the tea begins to spill

the scientists appeal to him in shock.


You are too full, he says to them.

Come back to me when you are empty.

Then we’ll talk.


World, thank you for emptying me.

And thank you for my cup, for this

fragile cup with it’s long thin cracks.


Thank you for my thirst,

this thirst so deep sometimes

I beg for one more sip.


And thank you for these lips

that beg, thank you for the empty cup,

and thank you for the sometimes dew.


We say Amen –  and be grateful if conspicuous consumption is on your plate.

1 Comment
  • Art Goodtimes
    Posted at 17:37h, 29 November

    eating beet salad is wonderfully sensuously bitter and sweet. and how compassionate to be thankful for all of it, even the all-too-much that is our american normal…