Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

Roses & poetry September 29, 2012

Birthday roses from my husband, Randy.

WHAT WOMAN DOESN’T love roses and poetry?

After work on Wednesday, my 56th birthday, my dear husband brought me a dozen wrapped long-stem roses. Then he disappeared, tools and parts in hand, down the basement stairs to the laundry room to repair my clothes dryer which no longer was producing heat. Roses from the repairman. Perfect.

Simultaneously, I was upstairs in my office checking my email while my birthday supper, homemade lasagna, finished baking.

Crossings at Carnegie, housed in a former Carnegie library, is a privately-owned cultural visual and performing arts center in Zumbrota. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.

Waiting in my in-box was this message from Crossings at Carnegie, a privately-owned arts center in Zumbrota:

Thank you for submitting poetry/prose to be considered for Crossings’ “It’s All One Water” exhibit. We received about 110 poems, from which jurors chose 28. It was exciting to receive such a fine outpouring of exceptional work from so many talented writers. Jurists told us they were a pleasure to read, and selecting those to be included was a difficult task.

We are pleased to inform you that your entry, “In which Autumn searches for Water,” was chosen to be part of this exhibit. Your poem will be on display, along with other written works and photographs, through the month of October.

How sweet is that? Another dozen roses, figuratively speaking.

I’ll admit that when I submitted “In which Autumn searches for Water,” I was confident my poem would be selected for Crossings’ joint collaboration with the Zumbro Watershed Partnership. I don’t mean that in an arrogant, haughty way. But I think those of us who write realize when we’ve written a piece that sings.

Not that I’m going to sing. You would not want to hear me sing. But I will read my water-themed poem during the Friday, October 19, “It’s All One Water” reception which begins at 7 p.m. A reading of written pieces, with screen projection of water-themed photos, will start at 7:30 p.m. next door to Crossings at the Zumbrota State Theatre.

A chapbook of selected photos and writing (maybe my poem?) also will be published.

There you have it, roses and poetry. Perfect.


ANOTHER FARIBAULT RESIDENT, Larry Gavin, a writer who teaches English at Faribault High School (he’s taught all three of my kids), is also among the “It’s All One Water” selected poets. Larry, however, is eons ahead of me in poetry. He’s already published three poetry collections. Like me, though, he also was published on Roadside Poetry project billboards (now ending after a run of 22 seasonal poems). You can learn more about this gifted Faribault poet in a post I published nearly a year ago by clicking here.

© Copyright 2012 Audrey Kletscher Helbling


6 Responses to “Roses & poetry”

  1. Beth Ann Says:

    What a great way to celebrate your birthday!! That is a wonderful honor and you are indeed a wonderful writer and deserving of having your piece highlighted!! Congrats!!!! I am sure your piece sings beautifully!!!! Congrats!

  2. Congratulations! How excited you must be. And the roses are beauties.

  3. Jackie Says:

    Such an honor Audrey, and to find out on your birthday. How splendid!!!. P.S. Loved the roses 🙂

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