Poetry Friday: Indulge in Reversible Verses

poetry friday


Fats here.

As we continue our bimonthly theme, Crazy Over Cybils, here at Gathering Books, I would like to share with you a poem from the award-winning poetry collection, Mirror Mirror: A Book of Reversible Verse. Writtten by Marilyn Singer and illustrated by Josée Masse, Mirror Mirror won the poetry division in the 2010 Children’s and Young Adult Bloggers’ Literary Awards.

Mirror Mirror

The poems in this collection are called reversos because they’re written as two different versions of the same story. In the case of Mirror Mirror, the stories are fairy tales. It was the determination of the poetry judges that the form – the style, the poems themselves – inspire creativity, as evidenced by the number of readers inspired to create their own (inevitably discovering that a true reverso is difficult to achieve indeed).That one can tell a single story from two different points of view by reversing a poem is quite impressive. Every word in a reverso has to be chosen properly; the placement of the words affects the meaning of the poem, since placement dictates how it is read upwards as well as down. As one of our judges noted, “For some poems, the reverso form actually gave me aha! moments, causing me to look at a familiar story in a fresh way.” – From the Cybils website

Here is our poetry offering for today. Photo taken from the book, edited through an iPhone app. Today’s Poetry Friday round-up is happening at Teaching Authors.Looking for Beauty

What about you?

What poem do you have in mind today?


Mirror Mirror: A Book of Reversible Verse
Winner, 2010 Cybils (Poetry)
Winner, Land of Enchantment Picture Book Award
Nominee, Texas Bluebonnet Award
AWB Reading Challenge Update: 9 0f 35


A-Z Book Challenge Update: 14 of 26
(M, Z, B, N, R, J, A, H, W, X, V, I, L, T)


Read-a-Latte Challenge Update: 23 of 150


Book Bingo Challenge Update: Re-read 1 book

20 Comments on Poetry Friday: Indulge in Reversible Verses

  1. When this first came out, I wrote several. They are so challenging. I love the book Mirrow, Mirror, Fats. Great book.


    • Yes they are! I haven’t tried to write a reverso, but one day I’d like to! I would love to read your works Linda. That would be truly wonderful!! =)


  2. Hi, Fats. This is one of my favorite recent books. I tried to write a reverso for Jabberwocky and had to abandon it. I heard that Singer is coming out with another book of reversos. It may have been published already. I’ll have to research that!


  3. So happy to see a poem from Mirror, Mirror here today, Fats! I was honored to be a Cybils Final Round Judge that year to acknowledge Marilyn’s wonderful book :).


    • When Myra said we could feature books that won the CYBILS in the previous years and found this amongst them, I got really excited. It was one of the books I was supposed to feature in our Fractured Fairytale theme last year but was unable to. I guess books have their way of finding themselves back in your hands, don’t they? I’m glad you like this, and I bet it was such an exciting feeling being able to acknowledge this winner of a book!! 🙂


  4. Mirror Mirror is such an engaging book! I’ve enjoyed reading it with my own kids and with children I’ve tutored.


  5. That is one of my favorites from this collection. So clever!


  6. Hi, Fats. Trying to post again (tried earlier and failed :-(…)

    This is one of my favorite recent books of poetry. I tried the reverso also — with the Jabberwocky story. I never could get it to sound as “right” as Singer’s poems. I have heard that she recently came out with or will soon come out with another book of reversos. Exciting!


  7. I can’t believe I have not heard of this form of poetry – and now I feel I need to get this book and explore possibilities with my students.


    • I learned about this last year. So fun, although I have never tried writing a reverso. I would love to hear about your activity and see what your students would come up with!


  8. I love “Mirror Mirror”! And I love this poetry form. I’ve tried my hand with it with mixed results, but had fun none the less. =) Thanks for highlighting this book today!


    • This form of poetry sure does sound a lot of fun, but I haven’t tried writing one. I don’t know if I’ll be able to, but I guess it takes practice just like anything else. Besides, it’s having fun that matters, right, Bridget? =)


  9. Thanks for telling us about this book, Fats! I’ve heard of reversible poems, never tried to write one, but this one makes it look effortless (and therefore it must be good!).


    • You’re welcome, Violet! The book does make writing reversible poems seem effortless. When you are able to come up with one, I’d love to read it! =)


  10. I can’t wait for her new one — Follow, Follow!


  11. I love this book! Josie does too!


4 Trackbacks / Pingbacks

  1. BHE (38): Because We’re Still Cybil-ized |
  2. Monday Reading: Olivia, Neville, Goldilocks and four very red books – and January Winner of AWB Reading Challenge |
  3. [Poetry Friday] Emperors, Princes, and Princesses in Singer and Masse’s “Follow Follow” |
  4. [Poetry Friday] Paying Tribute to Greek Myths through Reverso Poems in “Echo Echo” – Gathering Books

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