Thanksgiving. I'm thankful that I was up early and went for a morning-moon run, and got to witness the fat full orange moon as it was setting. (I'm thankful that dark winter mornings increase my chances of seeing a sunrise!) I'm thankful that it took me less than three hours to drive to Seattle—a trip that can take twice that on a bad day. I'm thankful that there is a warm home of relatives waiting there with delicious food waiting for me, without a doubt. I'm thankful for the great white egrets flocking and flying near the marshlands of Kalama, Washington, right at the side of the highway . (I thought they were some kind of geese but the internet tells me Great Egret. Bird experts: input welcome!) They are supernaturally white and plentiful, and made me think of the Mary Oliver poem, below. I am thankful for my "place in the family of things."
You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
For a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about your despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting --
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.