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Analysis and comments on This Is Just To Say by William Carlos Williams

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Comment 62 of 262, added on April 29th, 2006 at 2:42 PM.

this poem is just awsome, just a few words, a commonpace situation , a
note on the fridge...and this feeling of trangression, this is just
lustful! he apologies but doesn't regret at the same time.simple words but
the right ones, I pictured myself,facing this huge white frige with note
stuck on it...

Emma from France
Comment 61 of 262, added on April 20th, 2006 at 8:15 AM.

There is a wealth of information we can infer directly from the words of
the poem, without having to resort to WCW's Imagist inclinations or his
latent Socialism.

We know, for instance, that the author of the note expects it to be read
and soon - he has some sort of relationship to the reader that allows them
to share access to the icebox. We know that the author has enough
information about the reader that he knows what she was thinking about
having for breakfast.

There are some questions that the poem begs - Why would a genuinely
contrite plum-thief describe how much joy his larcenous perfidy brought
him? If he's not genuinely contrite - and I submit that he is not sorry at
all - then why leave a note? Why start it so cavalierly? If he and the
intended recipient were so close as to share an icebox and therefore likely
a home, would the pilfered plums really be a noteworthy issue?

I suggest that this is the last note from one lover to another. Either the
man is leaving her for another woman or she's discovered a faithless
indiscretion and chucked him out and he's decided to go like a barbed

A note such as this could be devestating - subtle and incisive.

It says: "I want you to know it was me. I did this. And I did it to you. I
knew when I did it that you didn't want it to happen. And I loved it."

The ambiguity of the plum reference is, in my opinion, intentional. By
forcing the reader to consider and reconsider the crime of the stolen
fruit, it forces her to ask who is both sweet and cold? "Is it me?" she
might ask. "Am I sweet but cold? Is the other woman sweet but cold? Was he
sweet but cold?" These thoughts would be a puzzle providing continuous
temptation to draw the reader into thinking about the event again and
again, like a stone skipping over a lake of cold realisation that he is

Nathan Dornbrook from United Kingdom
Comment 60 of 262, added on April 17th, 2006 at 7:17 PM.

The simplicity of William's crime, eating the plums, just exeplifies the
lack of sincerity in the apology. He was probably trying to show how
apologies are more of execuses than anything else. The speaker isn't sorry
he ate the plums, which is obvious in his description of them, but he
probably doesn't want his friend mad at him. Maybe William's was sick of
getting lame apologies so he wrote this simple poem...

Jenn Webb from United States
Comment 59 of 262, added on April 1st, 2006 at 10:23 AM.

This poem really caught my attention! I think it is very weird but also
great :) ...free verse is so good. I recommend to read EE Cummings-I carry
your heart (thats my favorit)...

alexandra from Slovakia Republic
Comment 58 of 262, added on March 30th, 2006 at 10:30 PM.

also the only word capitalized other than I is "Forgive" which shows that
forgiveness is probably the most important theme in the poem.

nolan from United States
Comment 57 of 262, added on March 30th, 2006 at 10:24 PM.

if there is any symbolism in this note about eating someone's plums, it is
edenic. the plums are the forbidden fruit, the taste and feel are the
temptation(snake), and the ultimate forgiver is god. personally i think he
just spaced a note awkwardly and called it a poem. (its just a sentence
with white space)

nolan from United States
Comment 56 of 262, added on March 30th, 2006 at 6:13 PM.

i hate plums but this poem makes me want to eat one and u people talkin
about sacred fruit gimme a break u guys must have your heads up your ...
thinkin that one up

sean from Canada
Comment 55 of 262, added on March 22nd, 2006 at 4:30 AM.

Forget the contents of the poem and focus more on the concept of it. The
poem is like an apologetic theory or algorithm that can be applied to any
kind of apology or repentance. The contents itself focus more on visual
elements - the poem being from the visual era. When you read it, you
picture the plums in your 'minds eye' the adjectives sweet and cold, also
provoke your imaginative stimuli. Was this analysis to deep? The product of
deep analysis leads to misinterpretation and is not always the correct
answer. Keep it simple. All that rubbish about sacred fruit and virginity?
I mean really.......

Joshua from South Africa
Comment 54 of 262, added on March 20th, 2006 at 3:33 AM.

The greatest thing about being a critic, is that you're never wrong. Poetry
is not about method, it's about feeling. The greatest poem touches the
heart, escaping the mind' which rapes it's purity. This is just to
say...........escaped my mind, almost touching my heart. Almost.

Donn from Taiwan
Comment 53 of 262, added on March 8th, 2006 at 2:33 PM.

this good poem. i read this in 12th grade. me really good at reading poem.

KIMMY from United States

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Information about This Is Just To Say

Poet: William Carlos Williams
Poem: This Is Just To Say
Added: Feb 20 2003
Viewed: 2624 times
Poem of the Day: Nov 22 2008

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