See our poems in the sidewalks at Riverfront Park, in the sidewalks in Old Towne Mankato and on the poetry signs in the Mankato and North Mankato parks and trails.
Hear some of our poets reading their poems by calling 507-403-4038 and selecting stops 401 to 441. The stop numbers are for each of the poetry signs on the trails.
Every so often, we challenge one another for a little poetry fun.
At the Blizzard Poetry Retreat (January, 2008) we did a collaborative poetry exercise – everyone was asked to write a few lines about a place and then pass those lines to the person next to them – that person added to the poem and passed it on to be added to again. Each poet was only given a few minutes to write. Below are a few of the results.
Steps, more steps, large blocks
multiplying until my knees
protest the torturous climb
but ahhh! The view over Florence amazes…
Red tiled roofs over
fit like magic tiles
receding to the horizon.
To stay here forever
surveying the roofs and walls
Sticking to the skin, the humid air
draws our minds away from langquid palms
that line the streets we only see
in visiting a southern state for conference
The sweating plams of northern poets
held hostage by the heat,
clasp together in silent prayer
for cooler air conditioned atmosphere.
Like the shirt adhered to my back,
my words grip me and shift and cling.
Why do they protest their birth?
I sit, stinky and dumb with writer’s block.
Sunset’s glow lights the Big Cobb River
turning the snow to fire and shadows to ash
The wizened trees raise their arms
black and frail against an orange sky.
and a group of friends,
relatives in spirit if not in blood,
bemoan the too soon come end of a lovely day.
I stand on a rocky cliff
15 feet above Lake Superior
listening to water
murmur with the waves,
lapping the stones below
sliding off them silently
as the loon floats with baby
contentedly on her back
in the rise and fall
rise and fall
a haunting lullaby of the North.
I have been to Austria
Saw where “sound of music” was made
patted heads of trolls
and strolled through formal gardens.
I have been to Mexico
Saw the ocean and played in waves
Patted heads of dogs
and shopped in open markets.
I have been to Oregon
Waded in waves that wafted from Japan
Walked till my feed were sore
from plane to plane
that magicked me from place to other place.
The children beside the river
caress blood-red jasper and hematite.
But the stones remain silent
as if they did not care
whether the children have
anything to tell them
or anything to say to each other.
Bells attached to a horse collar
Jingle a tunless song
as the dust barely rises
fro the road trod over for ages.
This is the way to somewhere forgotten
where once strangers were welcome
This is the sound and trust
there will be a warm bed and hay
and hot stew for you – even
if home is miles behind.
over a sold, round rock
reflecting off waves
that jig across
memory of lake
the glaciers scraped away
to set it here.
My newness sets me apart
from history both
cold and warm,
I look toward far shore,
a coastline blurred by
I waded across last summer
bypassing the log the weak of heart used
that spanned the birthing stream
The father of all waters in his infancy
tugging at my ankles, pulling about my knees
and I feel tempted to let go
let it take me far away
or deep down under.
Recently, Derek challenged us to, in only 90 seconds, write a little haiku about…tuna. These were the fun results:
Flashes of silver
Fled in search of cooler seas
Now what will we eat
Craving lunchbox love
I slowly open the lid
Fish smell breaks my heart
Schools of silver fish
Flash through ocean depths,
tuna Becomes silver cans.