This Is Just to Say

Yesterday afternoon, as I was grilling my pan of vegetables and dillyburgers, the smoky smell filled the air as it billowed out from the grill and wafted across the yard. As I savored the smell,  I hoped someone was out on their patio or walking the neighborhood so they might be tormented by the grilling smells. Thinking these thoughts reminded me of poems of false apologywcw0002 by William Carlos William. I consulted Gail Carson Levine’s book Forgive Me, I Meant to Do It for guidance as I developed my poem of false apology.

I was grilling 
the burgers and veggies
on my

which made your
mouth salivate
stomach grumble

Forgive me
I savored
every single
grilled morsel

Here is William Carlos William’s original poem.

I have eaten
the plums
that were in
the icebox

and which
you were probably
for breakfast

Forgive me
they were delicious
so sweet
and so cold



30 thoughts on “This Is Just to Say

  1. Ah! Just remembered how I recognized the name William Carlos Williams– He wrote the poem that the painting “I Saw the Figure 5 in Gold” is based off of! Gotta love art connections!

  2. You made me laugh. I love This is Just to Say by William Carlos Williams. It’s the perfect amount of naughty. I enjoy Gail Carson Levine’s book, but I also really really appreciate Joyce Sidman’s This is Just to Say: Poems of Apology and Forgiveness. Also, dillyburgers? What are those?

    • Dillyburgers have sauerkraut, chopped onion and dill pickle, and mustard filling between two thin beef patties. They are not eaten on a bun.

  3. I actually gasped when you mentioned Gail Carson Levine. She was my ALL TIME FAVORITE AUTHOR. I was actually obsessed. After I finished all her fictional books, I had to move on to her nonfiction piece on how to write– it’s called “Writing Magic” and I would highly recommend. The poem is adorable. I love the mouth salivating and the grilled morsel.. it’s enough to make my tummy rumble! Also, what a funny name! William Carlos Williams.

  4. Haha, I love how you said you hoped someone would be tormented by the smell! 🙂 What a fun poem — love those fake apology poems, and this was the perfect chance for you to write one!

  5. Another terrific mentor poem from Elsie’s enormous bag of tricks! I began to imagine what kind of writing prompt I would use to get the kids to come up with the subject matter of their poems. Guilty pleasures are something we all have, but having non-guilty pleasures and then writing about them is taking it to another level of wickedness! And kids do love an occasional chance to be wicked, Don’t we all! I’d love to see some results of doing this with kids.

  6. I love WCW’s poem, and now I love yours too. His never made my mouth water with the taste of those plums, but like your neighbors, I am salivating over those burgers right now!

  7. shaggerspicchu says:

    Oh William Carlos Williams. I used him as an inspiration earlier in this challenge, I am glad to see you did too!

  8. I love taking a piece of someone else’s work and making it your own. That’s what I try to do with every single book I read and later post on my own. I think you’ve done this poem a great creative justice. I’ve never heard of it before but I kind of like the grilling aspect way better than frozen plums!

  9. And so, thus endeth the journey that began with corned beef on St. Patrick’s Day. Love the poem you wrote and love this book of poems! It’s time for me to start requesting poetry books for my after school book club. They were so excited when I mentioned a month of focus on poetry books).

  10. I can feel your heartfelt apology. After reading your poem, I can smell the grilling here in PA. Smells good and it’s making me hungry. Guess it’s time for my bowl of cereal.

  11. I love the poem you constructed after William Carols William’s plum poem I will need to check out the book you mentioned. It will be a perfect addition for poetry month.

  12. Judy C. says:

    I can smell the aroma of your grilling – nothing to be apologetic about – it will just give other initiative to grill their own or maybe come to your backyard for a sampling.

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