Katharine Towers, CAS Poet in Residence

Meet Katharine Towers, our new poet in residence.
Meet Katharine Towers, our new poet in residence.

Katharine Towers, CAS Poet in Residence

We are pleased to announce that the poet Katharine Towers will be the Cloud Appreciation Society poet in residence for 2016. As part of her new role, Katharine will be writing a short poem each month inspired the Cloud of the Month. We can’t wait to read what she produces, which we will share with you here.

Katharine Towers is Member 31567 of the Cloud Appreciation Society. Her first poetry collection ‘The Floating Man’ was published in 2010 and won the Seamus Heaney Centre Poetry Prize. Her second collection ‘The Remedies’ is published by Picador in August. Landscape and nature feature prominently in her work; she lives in the Peak District with her husband and two daughters and spends a lot of time walking or running in the hills, stopping to peer at wildflowers or look up at the clouds. She says she doesn’t yet know as much about clouds as she’d like. Her new role, drifting through the atmosphere of the Cloud Appreciation Society, will certainly solve that.

Here is a poem that Katherine wrote about the asperitas cloud, which is the new classification that has come out of the Cloud Appreciation Society:

 

undulatus asperitas

Once we saw a great cloud, made of ice
like any other cloud but wind-sheared
and drooping in the heavy air.
It lolled against the hill but no storm fell.

Barometers dropped like stones and it was
purple-dark, even in the early afternoon.
The ruckled sky had us standing pointing
in the fields like scarecrows, and mostly afraid.

Girls fainted under the weight of ions
and some of us made thankful prayers
for the wonder of that rolling sea above.

They say that waves from underneath
are kind and do not mean us harm –
even seem to love us; and it’s bliss to drown.

© Katharine Towers, from The Remedies, published by Picador.

4 Comments
  • Lynnette Cameron

    August 16, 2016 at 2:23 am

    Love it! Thank you. I have just ordered two of your books, and look forward to reading more of your ‘cloud’ poems.
    Clouds do inspire creativity don’t they, whether it be striving to find the right words to describe them or searching for angels’ wings (or poodles).
    Lynnette Cameron, Member 24,970

  • Anne Hatton

    August 16, 2016 at 12:01 pm

    Hi Katherine . I am sure you have seen the picture of a cloud pooh bear in the telegraph. This morning on my door mat I had a poem from my Auntie Sheilagh inspired by the said cloud . I thought you might like it . After all a certain amount of whimsy a good thing !?

    Said Kanga to Roo
    Do you think that is Pooh floating up there in the sky ?
    Could be , said Roo but what can we do?
    He’s ever- so ever so high .
    Roo went to ask Piglet, who was eating a twiglet,
    Oh please piglet what can we do?
    We will go and ask Owl, an elegant fowl, ( wrong poet )
    Thank you , oh thank you said Roo .
    Owl said he would try , such a long way to fly , so he put his warmest clothes on.
    He flew and he flew way out in the blue
    But when he got there Pooh was gone
    ??
    Sheilagh Bateman
    I hope you enjoyed it ,
    Regards
    Anne Hatton

  • Katharine

    September 6, 2016 at 1:06 pm

    I agree Lynnette! Clouds can be anything we wish…

    So glad you like the asperitas poem – and thank you for ordering ‘The Remedies.’ There’ll be a new cloud poem shortly.

    Katharine

  • Katharine

    September 6, 2016 at 1:10 pm

    Dear Anne
    What a lovely poem. Yes -whimsical is the word! I especially like the question marks at the end and the idea of Pooh Bear dissolving into an entirely different being. What would he become? Another poem there for your Auntie Sheilagh perhaps!

    Thanks for sending it in!

    Katharine

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