Neely-Dorsey’s ‘Meet My Mississippi’ Now Best Selling Children’s Book

Patricia Neely-Dorsey and Brenda Ragsdale present ‘Meet My Mississippi’ at a Mississippi school. Photo courtesy of Patricia Neely-Dorsey.

Patricia Neely-Dorsey’s poem, “Meet My Mississippi,” is now a bestselling children’s book. It was the No. 1 in new releases in children’s books on Amazon earlier this year. The poem, which depicts the wonderful aspects of Mississippi, can now be enjoyed with illustrations.

The original poem was submitted for consideration as the official state poem in the 2016, 2017 and 2018 legislative sessions. Although it was never chosen, the poem is an accurate depiction of Mississippi’s truest landmarks.  

Neely-Dorsey collaborated with Mississippi native Brenda Ragsdale to create the children’s book.

“Interestingly enough, we were introduced to each other several years ago through a mutual Facebook friend from south Mississippi,” Neely-Dorsey said. “I was looking for someone to do a magnolia picture at the time. It turned out that Brenda and I had so much in common and lived only a short distance from each other.”

The illustrations depict the poem from Faulkner’s home to the Delta blues in a kid-friendly format. Neely-Dorsey said it is a perfect book for children and adults.

“I see the book and poem being used in as many ways as a teacher or educator can think of with an underlying theme of gaining more knowledge about the state of Mississippi,” she said.

Patricia Neely-Dorsey is a graduate of Tupelo High School. She earned her bachelor of arts in psychology from Boston University. She has also written “Reflections of a Mississippi Magnolia” and “My Magnolia Memories and Musings.”

Brenda Ragsdale is a self-taught freelance artist who lives in Guntown, Mississippi. She is a graduate of Saltillo High School.

“This book was my first time using the medium of watercolors. I was always a little afraid of it, but it turned out beautifully!” Ragsdale said. “Mississippi is such a beautiful state and it has contributed so much more than most people know.”

Purchase Neely-Dorsey’s newest book, “Meet My Mississippi” here. 

By Talbert Toole, lifestyles editor of He can be reached at


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