Poetry on the prairie: Read haiku inspired by Belwin’s bison release

Everyone at the recent event was invited to celebrate spring, native ecosystems, and the art of nature in brief.




3 minute read

Bison released on the Belwin prairie, May 19, 2018. (Greg Seitz, St. Croix 360)
Heather Rutledge of ArtReach St. Croix with the Mobile Art Gallery hosting the St. Croix River Haiku Challenge. 🙂

Last Saturday, a herd of bison were released for the 10th year in a row at Belwin Conservancy in Afton. This year, the popular event featured a 5k run and an EcoArt Fest. As part of the art fest, ArtReach St. Croix brought its Mobile Art Gallery and the St. Croix River Haiku Challenge, upgraded with new banners.

In the back of the Lucy Winton Bell Athletic Fields, a sprawling complex of baseball diamonds and soccer fields, bison fans streamed into the event. At noon, Northstar Bison would release two trailers full of the beasts onto the 120-acre parcel of prairie.

Visitors checked out performers, created some nature art, and learned about how bison and grasslands are inter-connected.

Next to a pile of dirt and some big logs that served as a natural playground, and totally enthralled many children, and across from the stage, at the gallery-on-wheels, people wrote haiku, the three-line poems of Japanese origin. The magnificent bison and the peace of the prairie featured prominently.

If you want to submit your own haiku, use the contact form and we’ll add it to this post!

This herd will be there all summer, and can be viewed from dawn to dusk at Belwin’s platform on Division St. Visit Belwin’s website for more information.

Thank you to Heather Rutledge of ArtReach, Belwin’s Susan Haugh, and many others for making this happen, and thank you to all the poets!

Belwin Bison Release Haiku

Prairie grasses sway
Holding hope, giving witness
See a changing world
Heather Rutledge

Eat grass Buffalo
Chase turkeys till the sun sets
Run, live, sleep, be free
Steve Senger

The frog, the ladybug
The frog wanted a nice dinner
The ladybug ate him
Amy, age 9

People on prairie
Roaming the Bison’s old home
Singing with the birds
Greg Seitz

Home is the heart within
Nature has heart ready material
Relax, listen, live
Beau Ryan

Swishing grasses wave
Bison roam the prairie spring
Eat them and be sad
Jill Dawe

Bison come to eat
tall glistening prairie grass
in the evening sun
Jen Truman

Run through the prairie
rolling land with sand and grass
feels good, feels happy
Sarah Johnson

Beating hooves commence
Prairie land shakes to ancient
Old friends returning
Ina Edminster

Bison swirl from the truck
A new prairie, spring smells
Tails low, calm grazing
Kathy Sidles

Running with relief,
Feeling joy to move again
Bison loose and free
Julie Kendle

Susan is busy
talking into her shoulder
drives a big big truck
Sarah Johnson

Connection to me
Breathe into nature here
Connection to we
Shelby Lynn

Running, grasses, clouds
food trucks,singing, bison praise
Belwin rocks release
Jill Dawe

Birds singing flying
Bison soon-to-be-released
People look, listen
Sarah Johnson

Eagle in tree
fish in pond
fish in tree
Dennis Ferche

The sun is woken
nature is stirred from its sleep
the sound of the woods
Daniel, age 10

Long-stemmed sunflowers
kissing blue skies in summer
bearer of courage
Rhonda Niola

Bluegrass music played
Chris ran as the spring wind blew
the Bison galloped

Disclosure: I serve on the board of ArtReach St. Croix and my wife and I are communications partners with Belwin.


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If you have any questions, please email greg@stcroix360.com


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Poetry on the prairie: Read haiku inspired by Belwin’s bison release