THERE was a high majestic fooling
Day before yesterday in the yellow corn.

And day after to-morrow in the yellow corn
There will be high majestic fooling.

The ears ripen in late summer
And come on with a conquering laughter,
Come on with a high and conquering laughter.

The long-tailed blackbirds are hoarse.
One of the smaller blackbirds chitters on a stalk
And a spot of red is on its shoulder
And I never heard its name in my life.

Some of the ears are bursting.
A white juice works inside.
Cornsilk creeps in the end and dangles in the wind.
Always—I never knew it any other way—
The wind and the corn talk things over together.
And the rain and the corn and the sun and the corn
Talk things over together.

Over the road is the farmhouse.
The siding is white and a green blind is slung loose.
It will not be fixed till the corn is husked.
The farmer and his wife talk things over together.

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1 Comment

  1. Sam Kap says:

    “Laughing Corn,” is a lyric poem. It is interesting, showing the love of the poet for family and life in general. As usual, it is in free verse and has no meter. The literal meaning seems to be corn communicating with the sun and the rain. Well, it is obvious Sandburg did not want to write about talking corn. The personification of the corn and the weather refers to the need for all living things to have someone to love and talk to, no matter what species. Also, the importance to family in this poem shows Sandburg’s personal love for the idea of family. The most important device in this poem is personification. The personification shows that there is communication from corn, but is common knowledge that corn cannot laugh while talking to the sun and the rain. The comparison of corn and the weather to human families can be considered a metaphor as well. Again, corn laughing with something unlike it, the weather, can usually be only a bond between families. The gigantic differences are usually only overlooked in families. Friends aren’t usually so different as corn is to sun and the rain, though corn depends on those things.

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