“From Delft to MTL” by Audrey Hébert (translated by Deborah Ostrovsky)

The Girl with the Pearl Earring
works at the wedding ring counter 
at Birks

Delft 4ever on her index finger
soft, smooth voice 
she and Scarlett Johansson resemble each other 
like two drops of Smirnoff

Vermeer gets pissed off when she dances 
in the bars on Saint-Laurent
with those nobodies
his sketches are filled with spasms

at last call he pulls out his iPhone
and takes a selfie with her

true memories are all on JPEG

*from the collection HOCHELAGURLS, 2018.


AUDREY HÉBERT‘s first book of poetry, HOCHELAGURLS was published in 2018 by Éditions de l’Écrou. Hébert was born in what is known by residents as the Hochelag (Hochelaga-Maisonneuve). In 2015 she finished an MA in Art History on the needlework of the French artist Louise Bourgeois. She is now completing a doctorate. Upon doing genealogical research she discovered she is distantly related to the writer Anne Hébert (although she would have preferred being related to Edie Sedgwick).


DEBORAH OSTROVSKY lives in Montreal where she is an editor, writer, and translator. Her creative non-fiction, essays and satire can be found in carte blanche, Geist, McSweeney’s Internet Tendency, Tablet, and other magazines and journals. She is the recipient of the Barbara Deming Memorial Fund and the Marian Hebb Research Grant, and was chosen by the Writers’ Trust of Canada’s as a Rising Star in 2019. She recently returned from a self-directed writing residency at the Banff Centre for the Arts. Her previous translations non-fiction by Sonia Anguelova and Francine Pelletier as well as other poems by Audrey Hébert.