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In the spirit of Thanksgiving, I reviewed a poem about gratitude, called “Be Thankful” by an unknown poet. To me, gratitude means being thankful for what you have instead of thinking about what you don’t have. It is important to feel empathy for individuals who have less than you do and to appreciate all that you have. Everyone can be thankful for something–whether it be food, water, warmth, a house, or family. I chose the poem “Be Thankful” among a whole group of poems about gratitude because I was incredibly inspired by the message and tone of this poem. If you would like to read this poem, here is the link: https://blog.gratefulness.me/gratitude-poems/

“Be Thankful” is a 17-line poem divided into 7 couplets and ending with a three-line grouping. Though it doesn’t rhyme, it repeats the “Be thankful” phrase at the beginning of each stanza, helping emphasize to the reader the central theme of gratitude. The poem is intended to help readers recognize aspects of their lives that are challenging or hard, but nonetheless still could be positive and deserving of gratitude.

One of my favorite parts in this poem is the stanza that reads: “Be thankful that you don’t already have everything you desire, / If you did, what would there be to look forward to?” This stanza highlights the emotion of envy, in which people yearn for things that they don’t have but that other people have. Envy is usually thought of as a negative emotion, but the poet suggests that one should be thankful for not having everything you want because it gives people something to look forward to. From this couplet, I thought about how to turn my jealousy into gratitude.

Another one of my favorite parts is the fourth stanza that reads: “It is easy to be thankful for the good things. / A life of rich fulfillment comes to those who are / also thankful for the setbacks.” As the holidays approach, it is easy to be happy for the things you have, but the poet emphasizes that people with challenges barreling towards them may be the most lucky because they have even more to be thankful for.

In my opinion, this poem was a great kickoff to Thanksgiving, and it really helped me understand how to be thankful. Even if I don’t have everything, it is important to be thankful for what you do have – and if all you have right now are challenges, you can be thankful for those because they can make you better in the long run. I think people should read this poem with their family or friends on Thanksgiving to understand that everyone is a lucky person no matter what the situation is. Enjoy this holiday and time off as much as possible!

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