Thoughts on “This is Just to Say” by William Carlos Williams and a tribute

I’ve been waiting to write this post since February 10.

It all starts with one of my favorite and one of the most deceptively simple poems around:

This is Just to Say by William Carlos Williams

I have eaten
the plums
that were in
the icebox
_
and which
you were probably
saving
for breakfast
_
Forgive me
they were delicious
so sweet
and so cold
What could have been two sentences becomes, in Williams’ hands an iconic piece of modern poetry. It’s hard to articulate why but this poem has always stayed with me. So much so that in February (when it was freezing) I decided to riff on the poem in a tweet. Here’s the result.
This is Just to Say by Emma Carbone
I have stolen
the blanket
that was in
the closet
_
and which
you will probably
want.
_
Forgive me.
It’s so warm.
I am so miserable
and so cold.
Granted I’m only working in Williams’ framework, but I think it’s a pretty good riff on the original–especially considering I wrote it from memory in one tweet. This also leads me to conclude that William Carlos Williams would have been all over Twitter.
Check back tomorrow for a post on some other remixes of This is Just to Say.

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