Polly Duff Bresnick

Mirror Poems by Polly Bresnick is a helluva thing

Polly Bresnick’s new book is here, Mirror Poems, from O’Clock Press. The book is beautiful and handmade and hefty (and has drawings from Bianca Stone, who is everywhere these days, good job), and the concept is hefty too and fun, and the poems themselves ain’t too bad, it bears saying.

What the book is is first of all a translation from the Spanish of Patricia Serra Delmar’s Poemario Rouge, and those translations appear on the lefthand page, but then Polly does a feint and provides an antonymic translation on the righthand page. So she’s translated every poem twice, and it’s fun to cross reference her ideas of antonyms. Like, Delmar has a poem called “Red and Green” but Polly changes it to its opposite, “Green or Red,” and then there’s one called “Brazil” that she changes to “Texas.” I laugh audibly sometimes as I scan the pages back and forth. Polly’s figured out a fun way to read.

From the translator’s note: “A “mirror poem” is an act of mimicry distilled into the shape of a shadow on a page. It is a compliment of the original, like a color added to another collor to dazzle the eyes.”


Author Spotlight / 2 Comments
December 10th, 2012 / 2:33 pm


25 Points: Old Gus Eats

Old Gus Eats
by Polly Duff Bresnick
Publishing Genius Press, 2012
28 pages / $4 buy from PGP







[The Translator’s Note accompanying Old Gus Eats begins: “To visually mistranslate The Odyssey while not knowing the language, I looked for familiar shapes in the Greek symbols that could form English words. This has been termed eye-rhyming, bad lip reading, and Rorschach writing.” Similarly, I wrote a 25 point review of Old Gus Eats, translated it into Greek using Google Translate, and attempted to visually mistranslate the Greek back into English.]

1. Paprika Pad Thai mojo draws the attention of asphyxiating ukulele slatherers, forming a tautology.

2. Yogurt induces food observations.

3. Ventrical self-serving pie charts can and will increase avoirdupois noontime chestnut old betsy emissions. Otto enters the ether.

4. An echo purges me nightly, biting my journal of Hellenistic studies, kumquats, eureka, mazeltov, orange pod.

5. O.J. Simpson as maker of P.T. Barnum bone structures: not only cornucopia but 88 tote bags of ayahuasca doctors. Madeleine Albright goes deep.

6. Negative herpes icon resembling Tristan Tzara’s dressmaker dummy applies milk mask to mule, nods vigorously, becomes spurter, engages in tantric AYO ALMIGHTY KAPOW verses, pierces epilogue.

7. Aztecs not mentioned.

8. Aflac peen dongler appears as vat paddler. Oval apertures and vellum vulvas elongated to vast dimensions of fatwa flavors.

9. Otto triangle ensnares kava plant with Diplo audio, followed by frequent kevlar didacticism. Ottawa nixed from frontal bouche/gouge, and trumpeted into era of revisionist tapioca pap smears.

10. Mystic River references unencumbering, pie frequent, epoxy pleasant. READ MORE >

November 20th, 2012 / 9:09 am