105 Ways to Give a Book

Poetry Friday: Follow, Follow

Follow Follow: A Book of Reverso PoemsFollow Follow: A Book of Reverso Poems
by Marilyn Singer, illustrated by Josee Masse

Dial 2013, review from library copy
This picture book of poetry has a clever twist. The poems can be read backwards or forwards. With different line breaks, punctuation, and intended inflection, the reversed poem becomes something altogether new. Having common fairy tales as the subjects makes it easy for the reader to jump right into the story told in the contrasting verses. For instance On With the Dance captures - so to speak - the twelve dancing princesses:
Sleep, soldier.
Do not
follow this eager pack of princesses.
by moonlight,
steal unseen from the castle,
keeping secrets.
fathers need to know
night after night,
these dancing slippers are always worn out.
Or from another perspective:
These dancing slippers are always worn out
night after night.
Fathers need to know.
keeping secrets,
Steal unseen from the castle
by moonlight.
follow this eager pack of princesses.
Do no
sleep, soldier.
See how differently it reads with the same words? Love these. The illustrations are wonderful too, often combining contrasting colors like blues and oranges. Great poetry for young readers.

Poetry Friday is hosted today at Jama's Alphabet Soup.

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jama said...

I really liked Mirror, Mirror, and can't wait to see this one. A very cool poetic form -- how does she do it?!

Karin Fisher-Golton said...

That is really nifty! I love that kind of word play poem. Thank you for introducing me to it.

I'm glad to hear about Mirror, Mirror, too, Jama.

Renee LaTulippe said...

I just ordered MIRROR, MIRROR -- the reverso is fascinating. Must try my hand at it!

Mary Lee said...

Reversos are fun to read and HARD to write!!

Bridget Magee said...

I loved "Mirror, Mirror" - reverso poems are amazing. I didn't know a follow up collection was coming out - I'm looking forward reading to "Follow, Follow". Thanks for the heads up!