Autumn in New Mexico

Pencil-tall aspen sprinkle gold coins by the roadside,

Clumps and clusters of chamisa burst into radiant chartreuse,

Glistening red ristras hang from porches, eaves, and arches,

Aromas of roasted green chiles infuse balloon-filled skies,

Fields of dazzling orange pumpkins await their next incarnation,

And cords of cedar, piñon, and pine burden pick-up beds.

It’s autumn in New Mexico.


Listen Well

Author and poet Katherine B. Hauth gave me permission to share the following comments along with her poem.

“After enjoying the voice-and-illustration pairing of The Corn Whisperer stories, I returned to the professor’s introductory account of the science behind listening to corn. As a writer of nature and children’s poetry, I was intrigued and inspired to write the following poem. I also have a desire to hear corn for myself some day.”

Listen Well

Where the corn grows
on humid nights,
quiet and still,

listen well

between howls of distant coyotes
as water and minerals rise
from moist soil.

Listen well

for ever-so-faint
popping and cracking
as cells expand

from roots through stalks
to leaves.

Corn is talking.

Katherine Hauth is the author of What’s for Dinner? Quirky, Squirmy Poems from the Animal World and Night Life of the Yucca: The Story of a Flower and a Moth.