A Poetry Competition
Twin Rivers Council for the Arts, the City Center Partnership, the Southern Minnesota Poets Society, and the City of Mankato have collaborated on WordWalk – a sidewalk poetry competition. This new public art project has permanently installed poems by stamping them into Mankato sidewalks.
Area poets were invited to submit up to three separate poems in spring 2009, each comprising 200 characters or less. Doris Stengel, past president of the National Federation of State Poetry Societies, selected the winning poems.
The winners are, in no particular order:
“Minnesota” by Ikars Sarma of Mankato
“Choices” & “Directions” by Marlys Neufeld- Hanska
“Wedding” by Connie Miller of Mankato
“Aging Benignly” by Susan Stevens Chambers of Good Thunder
“Tuna” by Yvonne Cariveau of Mankato
“Still Life” by Tim J. Brennan of Austin
“As We Grow Older” by Shirley Ensrud of Blue Earth
Eight poems were also selected to receive Honorable Mention:
“March Rain” & “To Myself” by Heather Elliot of Mankato
“Grackle” by Rick Lybeck of Mankato
“bluestem nights” by Patti Ruskey of Mankato
“The Same Sidewalk” by Damon Weinandt of Mankato
“That Old Want” by Jill Kalz of New Ulm
“I Wedge in At Zero Degrees” by Susan Steven Chambers of Good Thunder
“Sky Fruit” by Shirley Ensrud of Blue Earth
The eight winning poems have been stamped into Mankato sidewalks along Riverfront Drive and in the new Riverfront Park. Winning poems are also available in a chapbook that has been published by the Southern Minnesota Poets Society.
More than 30 poets entered over 80 poems to this first-year competition. Inspiration for the project came from a similar public art venture in St. Paul, entitled “Everyday Poem for City Sidewalk.”