Ruth Padel was born in London and has lived extensively in Greece, especially Crete. She is an award-winning British poet, Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and Professor of Poetry at King’s College London and has published ten collections, including Darwin A Life in Poems (Knopf, 2009), shortlisted for the Costa Prize, an acclaimed verse biography of her great-great grandfather Charles Darwin; The Mara Crossing (On Migration, Counterpoint Press USA, 2013), shortlisted for the Ted Hughes Prize, on human and animal migration; and Learning to Make an Oud in Nazareth, shortlisted for the T S Eliot Prize, on the Middle East.
Her most recent collection is Tidings, A Christmas Journey – a narrative poem about a homeless man, a fox and a little girl, which follows the Christmas sunrise across the globe.
Her prose includes Tigers in Red Weather on tiger conservation, I’m A Man on the influence of Greek mythology on rock music; a wildlife novel Where the Serpent Lives; two much-loved books on reading contemporary poetry, 52 Ways of Looking at a Poem and The Poem and the Journey; and lectures on silence in poetry, Silent Letters of the Alphabet (Bloodaxe Books 2010).
In this blog for Kings College she discusses the process for writing a poem.