Skip to main content

This Is Just to Say by William Carlos Williams

This Is Just to Say

I have eaten
the plums
that were in
the ice box

and which
you were probably
for breakfast

Forgive me
they were delicious
so sweet
and so cold

-William Carlos Williams

Forgive Me, I Meant to Do It: False Apology PoemsOf course, there is the wonderful collection of non-apology apology poems by Gail Carson Levine with fantastic illustrations from Matthew Cordell, Forgive Me, I Meant to Do It, many of which have a fairy-tale flair to them...

There is also a very fun book of poems by Joyce Sidman, illustrated by Pamela Zagarenski, titled, This is Just to Say: Poems of Apology and Forgiveness in which an imagined sixth grade class apologizes for everything from broken windows and stolen doughnuts to lost pets and crushes. The students then take the bold move of asking for responses to their poems. In poetic form, of course.

Dodge Ball Crazy
(to Reuben) by Kyle

for belting you

as hard
as I could
in dodge ball

I'd like
to say
I wouldn't

do it again
but I'd
be lying

By Joyce Sidman, from her book, This is Just to Say: Poems of Apology and Forgiveness.

 Sidman and Zagarenski are also the team who created the 2010 Caldecott honor winning book, Red Sings from the Treetops and a Newbery Honor in 2011 for her collection of poetry Dark Emperor and Other Poems of the Night.
Red Sings from Treetops: A Year in ColorsDark Emperor and Other Poems of the Night
And Swirl by Swirl: Spirals in Nature with illustrations by Caldecott winner Beth Krommes.
Swirl by Swirl: Spirals in Nature

To listen to some very funny and mostly adult variations on this poetic apology that is not really an apology, check out the last six minutes of show #354 of This American Life titled Mistakes Were Made. Thanks for reminding me of this, David!


Popular posts from this blog

Made by Dad: 67 Blueprints for Making Cool Stuff - Projects You Can Build For (and With) Kids! by Scott Bedford

On his personal website, Scott Bedforddescribes himself as an "Award Winning Online Creative Professional" working within the advertising and design industry. What is more interesting (and applicable here) is how hisWhat I Made website came to be. While sitting in a Starbucks with his restless young sons, trying to enjoy his latte, Bedford created something out of coffee stir sticks that ended up keeping his boys entertained, finishing his coffee in peace and sparking (re-sparking, really) his creative drive and reminding him of the "enormous joy gained from making things, even simple things, and that this joy is not the complexity or quality of the finished project but in the process of making itself. On Bedford'sWhat I Made website, he even shares Six Cool Coffee Shop Crafts for Kidsthat you can try out next time you want to enjoy your coffee and your kids are making that difficult. I've shared two below - be sure to check out the website and see the rest!


How to Choose Age Appropriate Books for Advanced Readers

How to Choose Age Appropriate Books for Advanced Readers remains the most read post on my blog since I wrote it in 2012. Because of this, I have cleaned up this post, tightened the writing and added in any pertinent information that has come about since it originally ran. When I first started in August of 2008, I was scrambling for content, finding my purpose and my voice and not always doing my best writing. How to Choose Age Appropriate Books for Advanced Readers was one of the first articles I wrote and, as a bookseller and a book reviewer, and now as an elementary school librarian where I have gone from working with kids reading well beyond their grade level to kids reading well below, this philosophy remains my organizing principle and central focus when reading and recommending books to parents and children. 

In the interest of my mission and the attention this article continues to receive, I have updated and expanded this article and included a guide to using …

POP-UP: Everything You Need to Know to Create Your Own Pop-Up Book, paper engineering by Ruth Wickings, illustrations by Frances Castle RL: All ages

POP-UP:  Everything You Need to Know to Create Your Own Pop-Up Book with paper engineering by Ruth Wickings and illustrations by Frances Castle is THE COOLEST BOOK EVER!!!  I know that I haven't dedicated much time to pop-up books here, but they have always held a special place in my heart, and the phrase "paper engineering" is a favorite of mine. Although I didn't know what it was at the time, I did go through a paper engineering phase when I was ten or so. I would sneak off to the back of the classroom during independent work periods and go to town on the construction paper and glue and make these little free-standing dioramas. A huge fan of The Muppet Show (the original), I reconstructed the all-baby orchestra from an episode, drawing and coloring each baby and his/her instrument then gluing them onto a 3D orchestra section I had crafted out of brown construction paper.  I also made a 3D version of Snidely Whiplash throwing Nell off a cliff with Dudley Do-Right wa…