Poem: Grateful


At this precise moment
As the season of Thanksgiving begins
I am grateful for so many things and blessings
I am unsure I can list them all
But feel compelled to enunciate as many of them as possible.

I am grateful for all those who have taken care of me
From the beginning of my life until now.
I am grateful for the doctors, nurses and hospital workers
Who worked tirelessly to keep me alive
And return me to the fulness of life in recent days.
I am grateful for their knowledge, skill and experience
But most all, their passion to heal the body
And compassion to mend the soul and restore a semblance of peace of mind.

I am grateful for the indefatigable stream of love
Coursing through my family and into my being.
I am grateful for their guardianship through the long nights of uncertainty
And the evasive dawns of renewed hope
We have endured together
Recognizing full well that no amount of gratitude
Will ever truly be sufficient or equal to their faithful dedication.

I am grateful for all my friends, near and far,
Who made their presence felt in my hour of need.
I am grateful for every card, good wish, bouquet of flowers and donation.
I am grateful for the discretion and willingness to give me the time and space
I need to heal and regain my strength.

I am grateful there is still abundant love for those still in their struggles
For life and deep in their own battles for continued existence.

I am grateful for the autumn colors, which have repainted the canvass of the world
In the windows through which I now see the world.
I am grateful for the fallen leaves and their message of the endless cycle of life.
I am grateful for the waves, the sand and the sea and their promise of a better tomorrow
I eagerly wait to see again.

I am grateful for my country and its ever-renewing ability to return to its founding aspirations
Despite its many trials and tribulations.
I am grateful for my faith, which is the candle of my soul
In good times and in bad
Always lit and warm in my heart.

I am grateful to the Source of life and hope
The Keeper of eternal memories,
The Guarantor of all tomorrows
Whose very presence proclaims that simply “to be” is good.

I am grateful for all these and more
And eager to offer my humble thanks
In this season of thanksgiving.

Please join with me and whisper a thank you
During this season of thanksgiving
For all our blessings – personal, shared and eternal.

Rabbi Lance J. Sussman, Ph.D.


  1. Reply
    Larry Kagel says:

    Beautiful words, We love you and hope to see you soon

  2. Reply
    Marlene Adler says:

    Dear Rabbi Sussman,
    I am so grateful for having you as our rabbi. Your poem was very heart warming to read. Please take this time of refuge to rest and restore not only your health but inner spirit. During this time of year we gather together in a different way but in spirit to be thankful for so many people and things that enrich our lives. Your poem expressed all of this.
    Wishing you and your family a Happy Thanksgiving. 🌞🕊🍂🍁🤞

  3. Reply
    CONNIE KAY says:

    Lance, dear,
    You say it all so beautifully! We are so fortunate to have you as our leader at KI. Glad you are feeling better. Hope your recovery is complete and the surgery was a success. Your poetry really “hits
    the spot”. Thanks and Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family!
    With much love and admiration.
    Connie Kay

  4. Reply
    Meira Greenwald says:

    Rabbi Sussman, that poem was so beautiful and spoke to not only my soul but all those who read it, over and over in remembrance of Thankfulness to our God…

  5. Reply
    Rochelle "Cissie" Levy says:

    Rabbi Sussman
    Your beautiful words are in my heart and I join you and whisper a thank you, not only today but everyday
    for all of our blessings shared and eternal.
    I add my wishes for your speedy recovery

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