a tasty bite of “Pomology” by Kim Roberts

Have you ever received a cryptic message, only to spend the next few minutes trying to figure out what it actually means?

D.C. area poet Kim Roberts received a text from her housemate that inspired her to write this witty, intriguing poem. So much depends on the sender . . . and what the receiver wants to hear. 🙂

“Still Life with Apple II” by Jos Van Riswick (oil on panel)
by Kim Roberts

I will eat the apple
read Stephen’s note this morning.
He is volunteering to play Eve.

He wrote, I will eat the apple
—but there are no apples in the house.
We have no lascivious Honeycrisp,

no bonny Braeburn, no upright Baldwin.
We’re out of spry Granny Smiths,
the skulking Northern Spy,

or the mysterious Pink Lady.
Stephen does have an Adam’s apple
and I have an Apple computer,

but you can’t compare apples and oranges.
The note said, I will eat the apple.
Perhaps Stephen’s chasing out the doctors.

Perhaps he’s not falling far from the tree.
Or he’s already eaten from the tree of knowledge:
in Latin, malum means both apple

and evil. I think Stephen is sending a warning.
He means, I will protect you.
He writes, I will eat the apple.

~ Originally published in Poem-a-Day, August 2017 by the Academy of American Poets
“Adam and Eve” by Edvard Munch (1909)


“Apples in a Basket” by Levi Wells Prentice (oil on canvas)

This is just to say, I’m happy Kim figured out what Stephen was trying to tell her, but . . . what if the sender had been one of my poet friends? What were they really trying to tell me?

I will eat the apple (we seem to be out of plums) ~ William Carlos Williams

I will eat the apple (I have had too much of apple-picking) ~ Robert Frost

I will eat the apple (peaches are too risky) ~ T.S. Eliot

I will eat the apple (that is all ye need to know) ~ John Keats

I will eat the apple (to peel or not to peel, that is the question) ~ Shakespeare

I will eat the apple (judge tenderly of me) ~ Emily Dickinson

I will eat the apple (a man and a woman and an apple are one) ~ Wallace Stevens

I will eat the apple (a strain of the Earth’s sweet being in the beginning in Eden’s garden) ~ Gerard Manley Hopkins

I will eat the apple (be astonished and tell about it) ~ Mary Oliver

I will eat the apple (to follow my inner moonlight) ~ Allen Ginsberg

I will eat the apple (like a complete unknown)~ Bob Dylan

I will (not only)eat (but hold in my heart) the apple – E. E. Cummings

Now, when Mr Cornelius writes, I will eat the apple,

I know he actually means, I will eat the apple galette.

Want one? 🙂


🍎 Apple Pie Order 🍏

After reading “Pomology,” everyone in the Alphabet Soup kitchen was ravenous (yet again). There were no subtle implications, fancy literary allusions, or witty asides. Eat. Apple. Now.

So we needed a recipe that was quick and easy, yet satisfying. In a millisecond, Mr Cornelius thought of Ina. In another life, she was his Eve to his Adam. So many tempting apple recipes, so little time.

“What about my French Apple Galettes?” Ina whispered telepathically. A sheet of puff pastry, three Granny Smith apples, some butter, sugar, and apricot jam, and we were off and baking.

Truly, you can’t go wrong with puff pastry. The darling Ina Garten came to our rescue! We’re willing to bet she never runs out of plums, and courageously devours each and every peach that crosses her path (she does not wear the bottoms of her trousers rolled, however).

These are the perfect fall bake; the joys of the season in every bite.

So easy — let Ina show you how:


You can find the printable recipe at the Food Network (yes, you can cut back on the sugar). 🙂

So, will you eat the apple? Go on. You know you want to. 🙂

Art by Nikki McClure (Apple, 2012)


Hooray, Hooray! We’re excited to announce the winners of our recent book giveaways. We enjoyed reading all your wonderful comments, and hope that even if you didn’t win a book today, you’ll check out all three of these terrific titles. If your library doesn’t have them, please submit a request. 🙂

And now,

*drum roll please*


the winner of NIKI NAKAYAMA: A Chef’s Tale in 13 Bites is JEANNETTE LEE!


the winner of FOR EVERY LITTLE THING: Poems and Prayers to Celebrate the Day is JUDEE ALGAZI!



And thanks to everyone for entering these giveaways.

Happy Reading and Happy Cooking! 🙂


The clever and punderful Bridget Magee is hosting the roundup at wee words for wee ones. Waltz on over to check out the full menu of poetic goodness being served up around the blogosphere this week. Have an apple-y weekend!

*This post was made on an Apple computer.

**Copyright © 2021 Jama Rattigan of Jama’s Alphabet Soup. All rights reserved.

49 thoughts on “a tasty bite of “Pomology” by Kim Roberts

  1. Why yes, yes I will eat the apple, dear Jama. In fact I had one with my granola this morning. I love that Stephan’s innocuous note inspired Kim Robert’s ‘apple ever after’ poem! And Ina’s creation makes my ‘tart melt’. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ha! so many ways to see an apple! I love it…but, Mr. Cornelius has the best answer by far! Wonderful post. And, that black and white print-artwork is divine! Thank you, Jama!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Apples are a staple in our house. I love everything about this delicious post. All the ways the poets would say “I have eaten the apple” is brilliant. Thanks for sharing Kim Robert’s poem.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I spent most of my teaching life eating an apple with peanut butter every day, Jama. I love them all. And, I just made an apple pie last week! They invite a bite with no reserve, don’t they? I love Robert’s poem and your messages from poet friends is so clever! Happy crunching!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yum, homemade apple pie. Do you do curbside pickup orders? :). I love apples with peanut butter — but can’t have pb anymore because I developed an allergy to peanuts in my *ahem* older age. Am trying to make do with almond butter but it’s not the same . . .

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Your “I will eat the apple” is fabulous! And what is not to like about apples? My favorites are Stayman winesaps. We can only find them this time of year, so I will be looking soon. So big and sweet/sour. I also posted about an apple… a slightly neurotic apple that crossed my path. Thanks for this luscious post.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Loved your apple poem, Karen!! I think I’ve had Staymans before but need to look for them again. My husband is a diehard McIntosh person — maybe he’d liked Staymans too.


  6. What a nourishing post, Jama, for body and soul! I eat an apple ALMOST every day, but now I will set some aside to make a galette. The poet’s quotes are brilliant; what a crisp wit you have! xo

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh, excited to hear you’re going to make a galette. Only problem is, puffed pastry can be so addicting . . . I’m already planning to make something else with it. Glad you enjoyed hearing what my poet friends had to say. They all like apples too, but with conditions, of course.


  7. delightful

    On Fri, Oct 15, 2021 at 4:02 AM Jama’s Alphabet Soup wrote:

    > jama posted: ” Have you ever received a cryptic message, only to spend the > next few minutes trying to figure out what it actually means? D.C. area > poet Kim Roberts received a text from her housemate that inspired her to > write this witty, intriguing poem. So ” >

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Well, THIS was utterly delightful. We harvested the first of this year’s Granny Smith hybrids and they’re SO good – and I’ve got puff pastry in the fridge, thank Ina very much. Happy weekend. ♥

    Liked by 1 person

    1. So jealous of your personal harvest. You guys are fruit orchard gurus. Your kitchen will smell so good while the galette is baking.


  9. 13 ways of looking at an apple! My mom slices each of us an apple every afternoon. They really are so good for you. We have succumbed to the glorious temptations of honey crisp apples, but there are other kinds that are pretty good.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Loved POMOLOGY, but your tour de poetry world with “I will eat the apple” was a tour de force! (And I did not miss the “made on an Apple computer” disclaimer!!) Thanks for the recipe, we’ll be having personal apple pies SOON!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Delicious post, Jama! I love all the poets’ responses to “I will eat the apple.” Clever and fun. The galettes look yummy.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. What a fabulous post! I love all your poetic perspectives of apple eating. That mysterious Pink Lady also tickled my fancy. Around here most of the apple eating is done by the deer. My own dear one was out shaking the tree earlier today to get some more apples down to their grassy tablecloth.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Oh, Jama, I loved “Pomology” and the apple galette looks and sounds insanely good, but I’m most taken with your variations on what each poet would say about eating the apple. Sublime. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Yummy post and I love the addition of the artwork. In fact, I love the art so much that the black and white and apple basket will be highlighted in my fall gallery. Ina Garten’s apple tart may be gracing my table next weekend. I made an apple pie for the family for this week’s dinner. The grandgirls loved it.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. I am beyond excited to be the winner of the beautifully illustrated and meaningful book,FOR EVERY LITTLE THING: Poems and Prayers to Celebrate the Day. Thank you so much and I can’t wait to get it to share it with my grandkids. I will definitely be keeping this book on my list for gift giving this season.

    Liked by 1 person

Comments are closed.