The anagarikas at Sravasti Abbey offer this Thanksgiving poem to all our friends (by Terri Chambers [Ven. Tsultrim], Jonathan Owen, Ken Matthews, Daniela Mieritz [Ven. Jampa]:

Terri:

T’was the 24th of November
And all through the states
All the people were grateful
For what they would put on their plates

All the humans were gathered
With dear ones far and wide
Thankful for all the happenings
This wasn’t the time to hide

Except for all turkeys
Pigs, cows and rabbits
For they are not thankful
With all these human habits

Football, parades and happy times
Were all that the humans thought of
But they forgot some sentient beings
Who they should be remembering with love

Gratitude, thankfulness and all good things
Were the order of the day
But there were some poor creatures
Who wished there were another way

Jonathan:

Though on the basic ground of being -This sheer knowing of mind РAll life is completely equal there’s no reason for thoughts unkind

Our human fore-bearers

Swayed by I, me, mine,
The potential to be free
Is hazy and darkened
‘Neath a thick canopy

So craving ablaze
On sight of those feathers
Hearing a symphony of gobbles
People gather their tethers

Dani:

Being raised to be eaten
It is so sad
There’s no joy in their life
No hope to be had.

There is so much sadness in the world
You would think on this wonderful day
That the Americans would remember
That it’s the animals who have no say

However at Sravasti Abbey
All the animals rejoice
For they are not on the menu
The residents have made another choice

Our taking the precepts today
Is another way
Of letting all sentient beings know
They will live for another day

Ken:

To protect all beings
Who reared us with care
We’ll mind our conduct
As we go here and there

The turkeys are out precious mothers
Who reared us in many lives past
For whom we will practice and liberate…fast!

We will not eat them
They are not to be abused
How can that be when they bring us joy
And keep us so well amused

To benefit all beings
We will practice with care
Far-reaching ethical conduct
To spread safety and love everywhere

Terri:

So if you are unhappy
Do not despair.
Just look outside;
The turkeys are there.