Oct. 16, 2009

Remembering the Cornell pumpkin

While conducting research in Kroch Library on Jan. 20, 1998, Lee Kass was inspired to write this poem. It was several months after a pumpkin mysteriously appeared on Oct. 8, 1997, on the peak of the 173-foot McGraw Tower. Exactly how the 60-pound pumpkin was placed on top of McGraw Tower, and by whom, remains a mystery. It was removed in March 1998. The prank became one of the university's most celebrated events, capturing the fancy of major media.

By Lee B. Kass, Ph.D. '75

High above Cayuga's waters

Dwells a pumpkin high

Some believe that it's not real

But they tell a lie

Shrinking slowly in the sunset

Freezing to its core

Soon to be a Cornell legend

For the future's lore

Kass is a visiting professor at the L.H. Bailey Hortorium, Department of Plant Biology. This poem may not be reproduced without permission of the author.