Write to the River — Summer 2017 call for submissions

Nature writer Barry Lopez wrote "To put your hands in a river is to feel the chords that bind the earth together."   

What does the river say to you? We'd like to know.

Write to the River is a new creative writing project for artistic engagement with our river environment.

We invite you to share an original poem or short prose response to the seasonal image above — "Lonesome Whistle" by Tom Reiter, featuring a train traveling over the Mississippi in Hastings in early summer.

No previous creative writing experience is necessary and all ages and styles are welcome — short prose works, free verse, formal verse, your own verse! 

All submissions will be considered for showcasing in future issues of Mississippi Messages, as well as upcoming potential events and publications associated with this project. 

Need a few ideas or prompts to get started? 

-  List the first words that come to mind.  
-  What story is being told? What is the subject?
-  What feelings are evoked? Does it remind you of a past experience?  
-  Imagine walking here — what sounds, smells and tastes might you experience? Or better, yet, visit the spot where this photo was taken — the vertical lift bridge near the Mississippi / St. Croix confluence — for further inspiration. While you're there, check out the stunning Sand Coulee rare prairie, a Scientific & Natural Area and a favorite of FMR volunteers, nearby.)  

Ready to share?

Email your piece to writetotheriver@fmr.org by August 1, 2017. Please include your name, address (or at least city and ZIP). And if you're under 18 years old, please include your age and a contact number where we can reach a guardian or parent in case we're able to publish your work. 

Submit your piece in whatever fashion works for you, in the body of the email or attached as a .pdf, .doc or .docx. Remember, this is a friendly call for submissions. There is no grading, only appreciation.

Happy writing to the river! We look forward to hearing from you.

Tom Reiter