Fire Dreams

Carl Sandburg

 
(Written to be read aloud, if so be, Thanksgiving Day)
I remember here by the fire,
In the flickering reds and saffrons,
They came in a ramshackle tub,
Pilgrims in tall hats,
Pilgrims of iron jaws,
Drifting by weeks on beaten seas,
And the random chapters say
They were glad and sang to God.
And so
Since the iron-jawed men sat down
And said, "Thanks, O God,"
For life and soup and a little less
Than a hobo handout to-day,
Since gray winds blew gray patterns of sleet on Plymouth Rock,
Since the iron-jawed men sang "Thanks, O God,"
You and I, O Child of the West,
Remember more than ever
November and the hunter's moon,
November and the yellow-spotted hills.
And so
In the name of the iron-jawed men
I will stand up and say yes till the finish is come and gone.
God of all broken hearts, empty hands, sleeping soldiers,
God of all star-flung beaches of night sky,
I and my love-child stand up together to-day and sing: "Thanks, O God."
 

Poems by This Author

At a Window by Carl Sandburg
Give me hunger
Autumn Movement by Carl Sandburg
I cried over beautiful things knowing no beautiful thing lasts
Back Yard by Carl Sandburg
Shine on, O moon of summer
Caboose Thoughts by Carl Sandburg
It's going to come out all rightódo you know
Cahoots by Carl Sandburg
Play it across the table
Chicago by Carl Sandburg
Hog Butcher for the World,
Fog by Carl Sandburg
The fog comes
Follies by Carl Sandburg
Shaken
Four Preludes on Playthings of the Wind by Carl Sandburg
Grass by Carl Sandburg
Pile the bodies high at Austerlitz and Waterloo
Handfuls by Carl Sandburg
Blossoms of babies
Honky Tonk in Cleveland, Ohio by Carl Sandburg
It's a jazz affair, drum crashes and cornet razzes.
How Much? by Carl Sandburg
How much do you love me, a million bushels
I am the People, the Mob by Carl Sandburg
I am the people--the mob--the crowd--the mass.
In a Breath by Carl Sandburg
High noon. White sun flashes on the Michigan Avenue asphalt
Languages by Carl Sandburg
There are no handles upon a language
Loam by Carl Sandburg
In the loam we sleep
Mag by Carl Sandburg
I wish to God I never saw you, Mag.
Poems Done on a Late Night Car by Carl Sandburg
I am The Great White Way of the city
Prayers of Steel by Carl Sandburg
Lay me on an anvil, O God
Remorse by Carl Sandburg
The horse's name was Remorse
Summer Stars by Carl Sandburg
Bend low again, night of summer stars
Testament by Carl Sandburg
I give the undertakers permission to haul my body
Theme in Yellow by Carl Sandburg
I spot the hills
Under the Harvest Moon by Carl Sandburg
Under the harvest moon
Wilderness by Carl Sandburg
There is a wolf in me
Window by Carl Sandburg
Night from a railroad car window


Further Reading

Poems for Thanksgiving
América
by Richard Blanco
Eternity
by William Blake
Grace For a Child
by Robert Herrick
Mass for the Day of St. Thomas Didymus [excerpt]
by Denise Levertov
One day is there of the series
by Emily Dickinson
Signs of the Times
by Paul Laurence Dunbar
Te Deum
by Charles Reznikoff
Thanksgiving
by Edgar Guest
Thanksgiving Day
by Lydia Maria Child
Thanksgiving Letter from Harry
by Carl Dennis
The Culture of Glass
by Thylias Moss
The Harvest Moon
by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
The Pumpkin
by John Greenleaf Whittier
The Thanksgivings
by Harriet Maxwell Converse
The Transparent Man
by Anthony Hecht