Illinois-born poet, author, and naturalist known for a 1990 nonfiction work entitled A Natural History of the Senses. Her other publications include Wife of Light (poems), Animal Sense (children's poems), and The Zookeeper's Wife (nonfiction).
She studied English at Pennsylvania State University and went on to attend Cornell University for graduate school.
Her best-known book inspired a NOVA miniseries called Mystery of the Senses.
She married author and poet
Carl Sagan was her dissertation advisor at Cornell University.