This is just to say


This is Just to Say: Poems of Apology and Forgiveness, by Joyce Sidman, illustrated by Pamela Zagarenski. One of several kid poetry books I ordered for Whale Child in a fit of guilt a while ago.

Okay, this one is very cute. As usual, super-fab illustrations – wacky kid-friendly sketches with all kinds of oddball details that fascinated Whale Child. The collection is supposedly written by a group of sixth-graders in response to a class assignment. They all end up saying sorry to someone, whether in class or out of it, whether human or not; and get responses too. Mostly pretty light free verse and easy to read like dramatic mini-stories, which Whale Child enjoyed. A whole book of sorry poems sounded a bit morbid to me at first, but each poem strikes a different note and there’s lots of humor involved. Some were more serious than others (one about having to put a sick dog to sleep), but all a nice read. Each piece stands on its own, but they all refer to someone else in the class or in the family groups of the class, so in the end you get a nice sense of community.

Published by

Nic Sebastian

Nic is the author of Forever Will End On Thursday and Dark And Like A Web. She founded the now-archived Whale Sound site and is co-founder of The Poetry Storehouse. Nic blogs at Very Like A Whale and Voice Alpha.

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