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Lower Mississippi River Dispatch No. 842
~~~~~~~~ Friday, May 14, 2021 ~~~~~~~~~
Clarksdale, MS ~ Memphis, TN ~ Vicksburg, MS

Coming in Two Weeks: May 25-28, 2021
Erin Mulligan Yoga Retreat
Seats still Open!

For more info, go to:

and click on:

Spring 2021 Artist Retreat
Photos & Sketches by John Ruskey

Some scenes from our journey: the wilderness within

Looking to the wonders of the heavens during the time of the full pink moon

And following tracks over the elemental face of the earth

River Otter


Mississippi Map Turtle hatchlings everywhere, on the move

All of creation, and all of the universe, informing our pens and pencils, our paintbrushes and cameras, our guitars and ukeleles...

Some with subtle design...

Some not so subtle

The pathway is sometimes soft...

Following footsteps of the muses, wherever they take us...

Or beckon...

The Wilderness within: This is a recapitulation of an ongoing theme of ours, the wilderness within. What is wilderness? Where do we find it? What does it do to our hearts? Our souls? Our pathway forward? The setting for this is the wild islands of the Lower Mississippi River, or on the Mississippi Barrier Islands. The vessel is our voyageur canoes. Our feet open the islands, our paddles open the wild watery world surrouding. Our paintbrushes, guitars, ukeleles, cameras, pens and pencils are the tools in the exploration, inward and outward. The rhythm of the quiet breath in, and the exhalation following sets the pace. In the stillness between thoughts, and in the space between our footsteps, and between our inhalations, the universe opens up, with infinite dimension and possibility...

Birds spotted during Artist's Retreat: Canada Goose, Wood Duck, Blue-winged Teal, Wild Turkey, Mourning Dove, Killdeer, Spotted Sandpiper, Greater Yellowlegs, Least Tern, Common Tern, gull species, Double-crested Cormorant, Great Blue Heron, Cattle Egret, White Ibis, Bald Eagle, Great Horned Owl, Belted Kingfisher, Red-headed Woodpecker, Hairy Woodpecker, Pileated Woodpecker, Northern Flicker, Eastern Kingbird, Blue Jay, American Crow, Northern Rough-winged Swallow, Purple Martin, Tree Swallow, Barn Swallow, Carolina Wren, Northern Mockingbird, Bobolink, Orchard Oriole, Baltimore Oriole, Red-winged Blackbird, Brown-headed Cowbird, Common Grackle, Orange-crowned Warbler, Yellow Warbler, Palm Warbler, Summer Tanager, Northern Cardinal, Indigo Bunting, various Hummingirds, and Dickcissel. (Thanks to biologist Lynda Saul for compiling this list!)

Note: next opportunities for creative/spiritual rejuvenation with Quapaw Canoe Company takes place in less than 2 weeks! May 25-28, Erin Mulligan Yoga Retreat

Also, now on the calendar: Nov 8 - Nov 14 Horn Island Naturalist's Expedition