This Is Just to Say
If you’re looking for a nice happy book
put this one down and run away quickly
Forgive me sweetness and good cheer are boring
Inspired by William Carlos Williams’s famous poem ”This Is Just to Say,” Newbery Honor author Gail Carson Levine delivers a wickedly funny collection of her own false apology poems, imagining how tricksters really feel about the mischief they make. Matthew Cordell’s clever and playful line art lightheartedly captures the spirit of the poetry. This is the perfect book for anyone who’s ever apologized . . . and not really meant it.
Levine models more than 40 poems after William Carlos Williams's "This Is Just to Say," taking its quasi-repentant tone to a whole new level (and sticking more closely to the format of the original than the poems in Joyce Sidman's 2007 collection This Is Just to Say). Cordell's pen-and-ink art is sprinkled with impish people, animals, and personified objects. Several poems reference nursery rhymes, literature, and fairy tales ("I, Rapunzel,/ and not the witch/ have lopped off/ my braid/ which/ you daily/ climbed/ to me/ Forgive me/ you're not worth/ the pain/ in my scalp"), and Levine has fun with readers, too, mock-threatening those who skip around the book ("Forgive me/ I put the curse of the mummy/ on anyone/ who reads out of order"). Poetry fans fine-tuning their sense of sarcasm need look no further. Ages 6 9.