Rural issues
Photography

In his compositions, Iowa State University photography professor Steven Herrnstadt mines place for haunted and haunting resonances.
Paintings

This painter found inspiration for her triptych in one of the Midwest's most common sights: a cornfield.
Interview

Linda Omaña, a member of our editorial staff, sat down with the photographer when he was on Grinnell College’s campus.
by Linda Omaña
Woodcut

The artist's recent images were influenced by the gradual transformation of the prairie by settlements and agriculture.
by Tony Crowley
Feature

Quilts aren't just for beds. Our correspondent shows us how they're warming up the rural landscape, too.
by Janet Carl
Memoir

When things change, do they always change for the better? See what you think after reading this memoir of a one-room Missouri schoolhouse.
by Helen Johnson
Memoir

A young writer fresh out of college; a Nebraska horse farm; a wild-west show reunion. A memoir by Dan Weeks.
by Dan Weeks
Publisher's note

For our publisher, the late CEO of the Des Moines Waterworks, Bill Stowe, exemplified environmental heroism.
by Jon Andelson
Essay

Dr. Laura Jackson believes the fate of the threatened Monarch Butterfly is tied inextricably to the fate of agriculture on the prairie.
by Laura J. Jackson
Closeup

Artist Thomas Agran took an unexpected landscape for his subject: the convulsed earth of a construction site that had once been a farm.
Essay

The FarmHouse at Hickory Highlands in Fairfield, Iowa looks as if it sprang out of the earth it sits on. That's because it did.
by John Freeberg
Essay

Last summer, native Californian Mary Rose Bernal "farm-sat," and found country life hard, sweaty, itchy and surprisingly...happy.
by Mary Rose Bernal
Photography

The work of this Connecticut-based photographer has frequently found its way onto our pages. Take a look at his work to see why.
Interview

Veterinarian Art Dunham's concern for his patients made him a world-renowned expert on the effects of Roundup herbicide on our environment.
by Jon Andelson, Mary Rose Bernal and Mark Baechtel
Video

Think moonshine is a thing of the past? Not so much. Watch a batch cook in this video taken on an Iowa farm.
by Isabel Kugel and Emily Mamrak
Digital Art

It's a deceptively simple question. Our associate editor created an infographic to provide the not-so-simple answer.
by Cecilia Bergman
Podcast

With his interview of Des Moines Waterworks CEO, our audio producer debuts our new podcast feature.
by Noah Herbin
Music review

The Pines' music is as rooted in their prairie home as a field of coneflowers. Read our reviewer's thoughts, then give a listen.
by Kelly Hansen Maher
Essay

Women are coming into farming in increasing numbers. As they do, they're changing the way we think about agriculture.
by Sophie Neems
Paintings

An Alaska-based artist turned her eye on the prairie during an artist's residency. The result: two paintings, featured in this issue.
Photography

This photographer's images explore the tension between people and the land they inhabit.
Interview

Associate Editor Maya Dru interviewed Des Moines Waterworks CEO Bill Stowe shortly before his untimely death.
by Maya Dru
Personal essay

Iowa Poet Laureate Mary Swander lives in a converted country schoolhouse. She decided a schoolhouse needs a bell, and a belltower.
by Mary Swander
Interview

Here you'll find our audio recording of Maya Dru's interview with the late Bill Stowe, CEO of the Des Moines Water Works.
by Bill Stowe
Personal essay

This Native American environmental activist draws a direct line between the fossil fuel industry and domestic violence.
by Kandi White
Memoir

A farm is many things: a business, a home, a way of life. For this farmer, it was a thing to share with the whole town.
by Shirley Moyer
Personal essay

Mary Swander's Amish neighbor, Joe, places her new belltower over the entryway of her Amish schoolhouse/home.
by Mary Swander
Photography

This Iowa Essayist--whose work we featured in our last issue--is also a striking photographer, as these images of the Dakota plains show.
by Sebastian Braun
Memoir

A costume, a pillow case, a couple of friends, and a whole town to roam in: that was Halloween for this coffee shop owner.
by Sam Cox
Essay

Where can you find the essential Iowa? Not in a single place, as this writer found, on the road with his father and a van full of friends.
by Colin Lewis-Beck
Essay

On any given outing on the prairie, you might just turn over an artifact from the country's indigenous past. Or maybe not...
by John Whittaker
Personal essay

With the bell and belltower in place, Mary Swander can summon the neighbor children for pie...
by Mary Swander
Podcast

In Rootstalk's fifth podcast, our audio producers talk with Prof. Brandi Janssen about the complexities of sustainaable agriculture.
by Eva Gemrich and Dru Greenwood
Interview

The ability to read and write is far from a simple matter, as Wisconsin scholar Deborah Brandt explains in this interview.
by Deborah Brandt
Essay

How do we reverse the degradation of our prairie home by industrial ag? The residents of Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage think they know.
by Joshua Lockyer
Local History

Anthropologist Don Janzen examines his own background in his essay about his father's homesteading childhood in early 20th century Kansas.
by Don Janzen
Interview

What does an artist do in a prairie town that doesn't have an arts community? Matt and Sarah Kargol's answer: make one.
by Matt and Sarah Kargol
Personal essay

The one-room schoolhouse is a symbol of rural education that's swiftly becoming just a memory, as this writer poignantly reminds us.
by Mary Richarson McBee
Poetry

The poet--an Australian transplant--takes on the autumn's changeable weather and its effect on we who move through it.
by John Grey
Memoir

When this Minnesota writer's family farm became a regional park, she kept her family memories.
by Michele Brennhofer
Photography

Keith Kozloff discovered a trove of his old black-and-white negatives from the 1970s in an old shoe box. Take a look at this selection.
by Keith Kozloff
Essay

Blake said we can see the universe in a grain of sand; can we see the prairie expanses of the past in a remnant on an Illinois highway?
by Cindy Crosby
Podcast

Wisconsin writer/activist Heather Swan talks with Associate Editor Maya Dru about her love of pollinators.
by Heather Swan
Podcast

Audio producers Noah Herbin and Eva Gemrich interview University of Iowa Prof David Osterberg about CAFOs.
by Audio producers Noah Herbin and Eva Gemrich
Book Review

This contributor, a soil scientist, environmental activist and farmer, reviews a new book offering a vision of rural prairie revival.
by Fred Kirschenmann
Photography

We're featuring two photographs, both taken at Grinnell College's Conard Environmental Research Area, by our frequent contributor.
by Jun Taek Lee
Photography

This Twin-cities photographer looked south for the images in this Closeup, to the small Iowa town of Belmond.
Essay

This scholar of Native American culture meditates on the meaning of roots, and the challenge to them represented by energy extraction.
by Sebastian Braun
Photography

This first-time contributor's photo makes use of a familiar Midwestern setting: the shorn cornfield.
Photography

Two of our perennial contributor's images focus on two types of migration in this issue: human and wildlife.
Photography

Vegetables, very tall trees, and roadtrip views are the subject's this first-time contributor provided for this issue.