“Here gathered”

Each Friday I post a poem, until I run out.

Here gathered round the table, we bless you,
God of our fathers and Lord of all life,
For you have provided all that we see
And from your hand comes this bounty of food.
God our Provider, most steadfast and true,
We thank you, and we bless your name always.
Surely no god—idea or idol—
Was ever as faithful as you, Lord, have been.
or we know in every battle we’ve won,
Your strong right hand alone has upheld us,
So we thank you, yet one more thing we pray:
“Come finish your work: ‘O Lord, make us free!'”

This poem came to me only a few days ago (as usual, when I was trying to go to sleep). Throughout, but beginning obliquely becoming more and more direct until the quotation at the end, it alludes to the old Netherlands folk hymn “We gather together”, which is the hymn I now think of first and most often at times of thanksgiving.

As always, I earnestly welcome your comments, suggestions, critique, or other feedback about this or any other part of my work. You can also read other poems I’ve posted here on my blog, a short reflection on what I’m grateful for this year, and last year’s much longer essay on that theme.

This poem is also posted on my wiki.

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