This Is Just To Say

In honor of National Poetry Month I decided it would be appropriate to find and share what bards and poets and other wordsmiths have penned about food over the centuries. Here’s one by the American poet (and physician) William Carlos Williams I first encountered in a class many years ago. It has remained lodged in my mind fairly completely, unlike the concepts of logarithms and half-life:

This Is Just To Say (1962)
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

It’s the power of food; in just 28 words, Williams captures the essence of an entire relationship, imagined in a bowl of fruit. Perhaps this comes from knowing the poem was written in 1962, but I get a very Don Draper-vibe from the narrator: inscrutable and self-involved with a cruel streak. What are your thoughts?

Click here for more information about National Poetry Month from the Academy of American Poets.

2 Comments

  1. Great site! I actually wrote about Williams’ poem on my blog today (www.novelbite.com), and baked a plum tart to go with it. You might enjoy it. Keep writing and I’ll be sure to follow!

    Reply
    • I did enjoy it, Laura, and I LOVE your blog. I’ll definitely be following!

      Reply

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