A Dictionary of Thanks (mine).

for family all around
for health & the mending
for farmers & knowing exactly where my food grows
for my bicycle & the safety of my neighborhood, these roads, this country
for slippers
for all the poets that have come before (for Bishop, for O’Hara, for Plath, for William Matthews, for Amy Gerstler, for the revelation of Zagajewski, for novels too: East of Eden and Giovanni’s Room; for E.B. White, for Maira Kalman, for Salinger…)
for jobs I enjoy (one that pays in dollars & food, the other in beer & books)
for Misha in California
for new friends, for longstanding friends
for tea and Saturdays
for being a woman
for text messages & handwritten letters
for hummingbirds like little mice in the trees
for packages stuffed in the mailbox
for smart people all around
for professors with their apt suggestions
for the coming of summer
for the students in my class who take the literature seriously
for bartering
for good coffee
for anyone who has ever read a poem I wrote
for magazines and journals and presses and publishers
for Ladysmith Black Mambazo
for beans and flours and pastas jarred in the pantry
for the possibility that at any moment I may write a poem
for the new mattress & all the free furniture
for the car’s survival
for my parents supporting me in my poetic pursuits
for only one too-early morning per week
for this body that can dance and skip and also fit in small places
for things material and immaterial
for people (you know who you are), for food, for health, for joy, for sweets, for my family and my life I am thankful, I give thanks, I say Thank You, I thank & am thanked, I live in thankfulness, in the thanking I am full, I am filled, I am ever filling & filled with it, thankful and thankfilled, giving thanks and being worthy of a thank-you, too

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