BOOK RIOT

Gather around the great Thanksgiving dinner table in the sky and share the books you’re most thankful for.

10 Literary Quotes for Thanksgiving

For those of us who, susceptible to holiday schmoopiness and the warm glow of a good meal, find ourselves at a loss for words when the time comes to go around the Thanksgiving table and share what we’re thankful for, there’s the good news that someone has said it before, and said it better. Here are some thoughts about gratitude for this day, and all days.

_________________________

We can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures.

–Thornton Wilder

Gratitude is a fruit of great cultivation; you do not find it among gross people.

–Samuel Johnson

Cultivate the habit of being grateful for every good thing that comes to you, and to give thanks continuously. And because all things have contributed to your advancement, you should include all things in your gratitude.

–Ralph Waldo Emerson

I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought; and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.

–G.K. Chesterton

In the end, though, maybe we must all give up trying to pay back the people in this world who sustain our lives. In the end, maybe it’s wiser to surrender before the miraculous scope of human generosity and to just keep saying thank you, forever and sincerely, for as long as we have voices.

–Elizabeth Gilbert

If the only prayer you said was thank you, that would be enough.

–Meister Eckhart

…for love casts out fear, and gratitude can conquer pride.

–Louisa May Alcott

At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us.

–Albert Schweitzer

Piglet noticed that even though he had a Very Small Heart, it could hold a rather large amount of Gratitude.

–A.A. Milne

…for some of us, books are as important as anything else on earth. What a miracle it is that out of these small, flat, rigid pieces of paper unfolds world after world, worlds that sing to you, comfort and quiet you or excite you. Books help us understand who we are and how we are to behave. They show us what community and friendship mean; they show us how to live and die. They are full of the things that you don’t get in life…wonderful, lyrical language, for instance. And quality of attention: we may notice amazing details duringthe course of a day but we rarely let ourselves stop and really pay attention. An author makes you notice, makes you pay attention and this is a great gift. My gratitude for good writing is unbounded; I’m grateful for it the way I’m grateful for the ocean. 

–Anne Lamott

Bonus round, because: truth.

After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one’s own relatives.

–Oscar Wilde

One Reader’s Giving of Thanks

There’s a lot I love about reading. Here are a few things for which I am especially grateful:

deckled edges

finishing a book just as the train pulls into the station

seeing someone reading a favorite book in public

a good beginning

a better ending

a mysterious, wistful inscription in a used book

re-reading a favorite and still agreeing with the notes you made in the margins

re-reading an old favorite and shaking your head at how naive you were

french flaps

when the coffee is ready and the light is good and the weather drizzly and there’s nothing to do but read

a bustling bookstore in full holiday swing

acknowledgments that are honest, funny, and humble

remembering and using something you learned in English class

forgetting to bring a book for the plane but then seeing something you really want to read in the airport bookstore

seeing something in your daily life that reminds you of something you’ve read

picking up a classic you’ve been avoiding and loving it

realizing that there are no rules about reading and that no one has the answers

seeing a “notes on the typeface” at the end of a book

knowing that no matter how bad the last book you read was, the next one could be your new favorite

One Reader’s Giving of Thanks

There’s a lot I love about reading. Here are a few things for which I am especially grateful:

deckled edges

finishing a book just as the train pulls into the station

seeing someone reading a favorite book in public

a good beginning

a better ending

a mysterious, wistful inscription in a used book

re-reading a favorite and still agreeing with the notes you made in the margins

re-reading an old favorite and shaking your head at how naive you were

french flaps

when the coffee is ready and the light is good and the weather drizzly and there’s nothing to do but read

a bustling bookstore in full holiday swing

acknowledgments that are honest, funny, and humble

remembering and using something you learned in English class

forgetting to bring a book for the plane but then seeing something you really want to read in the airport bookstore

seeing something in your daily life that reminds you of something you’ve read

picking up a classic you’ve been avoiding and loving it

realizing that there are no rules about reading and that no one has the answers

seeing a “notes on the typeface” at the end of a book

knowing that no matter how bad the last book you read was, the next one could be your new favorite