Thursday, May 22, 2008

This is just to say

I'm a big fan of podcasts. I like listening to them while I knit, while I go for a walk, sometimes while I fall asleep - you know, those nights when your brain won't shut off? Podcasts where it won't bother you if you don't hear the end are great for that.
The podcasts I listen to fall into two categories: knitting and npr. My current knitting favorites are Stash & Burn, Y Knit, and the Knitpicks podcast. For npr, I am a huge fan of Radiolab, Wait Wait Don't Tell Me, and This American Life. I have quite a few that I subscribe to, so (as with everything else, it seems) I fall behind and often listen to them a couple of weeks late.
Such was the case with the episode of This American Life entitled "Mistakes Were Made." This show has a theme each week, and this particular episode was about apologies that aren't really apologies, like the carefully worded ones made by politicians (hence the title).

I'm going somewhere with all this, really I am.

Okay, so much of this episode was devoted to a story about cryonics that was actually pretty creepy, but at the end they talked about this poem by William Carlos Williams, This is just to say. The poem, if you're not familiar with it, is a non-apology apology, and it is also a much-spoofed piece of poetry. The original and some really good spoofs are here. (You have to click a link for the original poem but the spoofs there are good ones - scroll down for some done by 6th graders.)
If you poke around the blogosphere it seems a lot of people were inspired by this episode of TAL. I'm a little late to this party (again, like everything else!), and it's not even National Poetry Month anymore, but it seems like fun. So here are some of my original versions:

This is just to say

I have washed
the wool sweater
that was in
the laundry basket

and which
you were probably
to soak in
some Eucalan.

Forgive me
I tried to help
and now it is
so stiff
and so small.

To MadMad, this is just to say

I have hijacked
the post
that you wrote
this week

and which
you were probably
for your readers
or the folks
over at humor-blogs.

Forgive me
it was a gem
so witty
and so true.

I even saw someone use this poem as a Mad Lib, though I can't seem to find it now.

So, care to make up your own? It's fun!