Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

Eleven magnetic words equal a poem January 24, 2019

Filed under: Uncategorized — Audrey Kletscher Helbling @ 5:00 AM
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SEVERAL MONTHS AGO, I purchased a duo Tootsie Toy magnetic board/chalkboard at an Owatonna thrift shop. I didn’t need it. But I liked the vintage look and the possibilities. Those reasons sufficed to hand over a few bucks.



Along with the board came a bonus baggie of magnetic words. They aren’t original to the board but probably were thrown in because what else do you do with a bunch of donated stray magnetic words?

I finally got around to making poetry with them. Here’s my first poem, which I posted on my refrigerator:



This proved a good challenge—to use the limited words to create poetry. (Pretend a question mark ends the first line.)



As poets understand, poetry requires tight writing. A word must hold value or out it goes. Poetry writing may seem easy to those not engaged in the craft. But it’s not. Penning poems requires focused skill and much practice as one of the most disciplined forms of literary art.


© 2019 Audrey Kletscher Helbling


18 Responses to “Eleven magnetic words equal a poem”

  1. Love these word mags. I have several I use to help me create as well.

  2. Beth Ann Says:

    What a great idea to have those words at the ready for creating poems. I love this idea. I have often looked at those magnetic word sets and thought they were genius. You put them to use. Love the poem.

  3. Sandra Van Erp Says:

    Fun. Certainly worth a few bucks. These are addictive, Amazon still sells the “Original Kit”. My daughter had several sets back before iPhones and Google. She and english major friends used them on magnetic boards like Scrabble. Of course, no one won, didn’t matter. Made creative composition fun. Must have been the visual element. Glad to see they haven’t lost their appeal – in competent, creative hands. I always thought them a great tool for teaching slow or handicapped too. Have fun!

  4. One thing that stands out to me is the words pertain to cats. Purr, Hiss . . . Calico, Tiger . . . Meow, Leap . . . Love the why dream poem too! I could use a set of these at work. When I need a brain break at work I play Mahjong. Happy Word Smithing & Happy Day – Enjoy 🙂

  5. Bernadette Says:

    Looks like a great warm-up exercise to writing! I liked the powerful active verbs; pounce, swat, leap and stroke. Have fun with these.

  6. Valerie Says:

    We had a steel board made for our son’s room and gave him several different packets of magnetic words. There have been some creative sentences and poems on it over the years. Fun!
    I like your poem.

  7. Jackie Says:

    Love your word magnets, and your poem :). My Grands would love making stories with those magnets, especially our 9 year old Audrey.

  8. Bella Says:

    what a creative way to lift one’s spirits during bone chilling weather days and I noted way up north its even more brutal
    with some nights being recorded like -30

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