Plums

5 07 2008

I find the Midwestern summer heat and humidity tough to live with, but there is some small reward to be found at the Farmers Market. This morning I bought fresh fennel, onions, new potatoes, eggs, hamburger, zucchini, beets, apricots and plums. Everything is grown within about 20 miles of Lawrence, by people who are eating the same food that they sell. It’s all wonderful stuff, but the plums are so sweet and juicy, just like a plum ought to be. Which reminds me of this poem:

This is just to say
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

            William Carlos Williams
 

 

Advertisements

Actions

Information

2 responses

5 07 2008
Priscilla

I’m quite fond of Kenneth Koch’s variations on WCW’s poem.

6 07 2008
foghorn

That is a lovely poem. It is a variation of the doctrine of “confession and avoidance”: yes, I did in fact commit the bad act, but I should not suffer any punishment therefor because . . . . ” In this case the “because” is the poem’s beautifully rendered eleocution.

It’s odd, isn’t it? The language is so beautiful but the effect is merely to rub in the loss:

“they were delicious

so sweet

and so cold”

It is as though someone stole your beloved old guitar and said “yes, I did it, and it played so well and I got so much money for it . . . . ”

Poets are perverse, like the rest of us.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s




%d bloggers like this: