Wisconsin People & Ideas – Spring/Summer 2015 | wisconsinacademy.org
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Wisconsin People & Ideas – Spring/Summer 2015


In this issue: Education takes the stage at the Fox Valley's Mile of Music Festival; two women artists make waves with national awards; a moving tribute to Appleton poet Ellen Kort; Madison Science Museum set to open this fall. Essays include a paean to environmental pioneer Rachel Carson, photos of rural Allen Farm, a rumination on the extinct/extant ivory-billed woodpecker, and an overview of the fascinating (and disgusting) human microbiome. We also explore the David McLimans retrospective at the James Watrous Gallery and debut new fiction and poetry from our 2015 contest winners.

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This spring, the Wisconsin Academy brought together our Waters of Wisconsin Initiative leaders for a day of intense discussion about the state of Wisconsin’s freshwater ecosystems.

Now that I am entering my eighth year as editor of Wisconsin People & Ideas, I’d like to take a moment to reflect on what this magazine means to me—and to its readers.

The final verse to the living poem we all knew as Ellen Kort was completed when she passed this April at the age of 79.

Generally it’s a bad thing to be called a “hoarder.” In David Nelson’s case, however, his pack rat tendencies are for a good cause—and will soon come to a very good end.

In its October 1962 issue, Life magazine included this photo of Carson talking with children in the woods by her home. Photo credit: All rights reserved © 1962 Alfred Eisenstaedt (Time & Life Pictures)

Wisconsin Academy Fellow and conservation biologist Stanley A. Temple's story of how environmental pioneer Rachel Carson prepared the soil from which his career and lifelong love of nature would spring.

In search of the once-extinct ivory-billed woodpecker.

David McLimans poses with some of his artwork. Photograph by Joseph Blough. Copyright © 2010 by JB Patrick Flynn.

Author and Wisconsin Academy Fellow Lorrie Moore reflects on the life and works of artist David McLimans.

Before I joined the Wisconsin Academy staff last fall, I believed it was rare to witness an individual experiencing an epiphany—a profound moment of insight, or the connection of dots that leads to a new way of looking at a problem.

He paced down the inner corridor, heading to the place he thought she might be, rolling a piece of sea glass in his hand. Odd, maybe, that he still panicked when she went missing, because she could never really be lost.

Like many Wisconsinites, I’ve spent plenty of summer nights listening to family and friends reminisce and tell stories as our campfire turned to embers.

As someone who appreciates the writings of Henry David Thoreau, I have tried to imagine what it would be like to experience nature as he did in 19th century America, to have even a modestly similar experience as this: “

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