Keepapitchinin, the Mormon History blog » In Thanksgiving Daily: November 17

In Thanksgiving Daily: November 17

By: Ardis E. Parshall - November 17, 2008


The wild gander leads his flock through the cool night,
Ya-honk! he says,
and sounds it down to me like an invitation:
The pert may suppose it meaningless, but I listen closer,
I find its purpose and place up there toward the November sky.

— Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass

The Children’s Friend, November 1964



  1. Ah, their use of Walt Whitman makes me smile :)

    But this poem has always puzzled me: what goose accent has “Ya-honk”? Where is this gander from?

    Comment by Ben — November 17, 2008 @ 11:08 am

  2. I just took my two children to visit Baskett Slough this weekend, a wintering preserve for the dusky Canada geese. When we arrived, there was a flock of well over a thousand geese (by my poor estimating skills) who were socializing, goose-like, together in the grass. As we were getting ready to leave, the entire flock took to the air. It was spectacular, specifically the way they rose like a wave. Rather than all rising at once, or in scattered spots, the flock peeled sequentially off the earth from one edge to the other, like dominoes or Saran wrap.

    Comment by Dane — November 17, 2008 @ 11:51 am

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