“River Meanders” Contemporary Mosaic Art
The River slows down in the Delta and bends back and forth in great loops or meanders. Some of these bends get cut off from the River as the riverbed moves over the years. This is how oxbow lakes are formed.
The Delta is all black mud that was built up from millions of years of silt deposited by the River. Much of the rest of the state of Mississippi was formed from alluvial deposits as well, but up in the hills, there is sand and gravel. Some of the hills are actually old sandbars and gravel bars that were formed by the River eons ago. Driftwood buried millions of years ago in these sandbars slowly fossilized from the minerals in the groundwater. Some of this petrified wood is eroded out of the hills over the years as it rains. My great uncles taught me how to walk the creeks up in the hills and find petrified wood that had been washed out. They showed me how to look for arrowheads in a field after a rain, and how to look for marbles and old bottles near chimneys. This was incredibly important stuff for a little boy from “across the tracks” that was spending way too much time in the library. If we were looking for buried pirate treasure, I couldn’t have been more fascinated.