Jean Miriam Larson of Falcon Heights is the winner of her hometown’s second annual Sidewalk Poetry Contest.

Larson’s poem was chosen from 11 submissions by the Mayor’s Sidewalk Poetry Panel, which includes Falcon Heights Mayor Peter Lindstrom and residents Jane Dickerson, Susan Thurston Hamerski and Kent Paulson.

The contest is sponsored by the City of Falcon Heights, in association with the Falcon Heights-Lauderdale Lions Club. The poem has been stamped into the sidewalk on the southwest corner of the intersection of California Avenue and Albert Street.

“We were thrilled to see the enthusiasm from last year’s contest continue,” said Lindstrom. “Jean, like many of our residents, was born and raised in Falcon Heights, so this city is truly ‘the soil of my youth’ for her and so many others. We would like to thank all of the entrants for their truly unique work, and also the Falcon Heights-Lauderdale Lions Club for their generous donation that made this contest possible for another year.”

Here is Larson’s poem:


the soil of my youth

kneads into my skin

breathes into my bones

and I love this place

like an old cottonwood

or open fields and sparrow swirls

like State Fair music drifting

up through stars and smoke.

—Jean Miriam Larson

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