Friday, August 11, 2023

We Are Cloud Climbers poem

 Hello and Happy Poetry Friday! Be sure to visit terrific Tabatha at The Opposite of Indifference for Roundup.

For those stitcher-poets and Sealey Challenge folks among us: have you read I Lay My Stitches Down Poems of American Slavery  by Cynthia Grady, illus. by Michele Wood? It's a beauty of blank verse poems, and it just this week released in paperback! Be sure to check it out.

I rescued a quilt the other day (from a thrift store!), and I am in love with both the fabric and the amazing hand-stitching. If I had to name it, I'd call it "Blue Sky in Blossom." What a treasure!

I've been craving a change of scenery, so today's ArtSpeak: LIGHT poem moves into the city, to a busy construction site! Don't you love how our writing (and art!) can so easily transport us? 

We Are Cloud Climbers

we carry drills
and drivers,
we scale beams
that claw the sky

our bodies stretch,
as we toil
to the clang-buzz-blast
of progress

for builders like us,
day both thins
and billows

we lunch on sunlight,
we hang our dreams
on pigeon wings

- Irene Latham


  1. Perfect! "Cloud Climbers" captures the essence of the artwork, Irene. I love "we lunch on sunlight, we hang our dreams on pigeon wings."

  2. Irene, what joy and fun in your post today. I love the blossoming sky quilt you saved. And your "Cloud Climbers" poem--wow. It makes me feel like I'm up there too. Thanks for the book recommendation of I Lay My Stitches Down.

  3. I especially appreciate the strong verbs in your poem Irene - "claw the sky" - sigh!

  4. "we lunch on sunlight" - chef's kiss! So much poetry inspiration in your words, Irene. Thank you!

  5. "lunch on sunlight" is wonderful! I love it. The movement in this poem is so tough and gentle at the same time...all that heavy equipment to climb clouds. So great!

  6. What are you going to do with your thrift store quilt, Irene? Curious minds want to know :) I like the movement in your poem, and especially the unexpected airiness of the last stanza.

  7. "on pigeon wings" - wonderful, Irene. I am always amazed at the photos of workers so high up in the 'construction sites', now I will think of pigeons up there with them! Love that you rescued a quilt!

  8. I'm swooning over that last stanza of your poem! And yes, I LAY MY STITCHES DOWN is a gorgeous book!

  9. Your landing on this poem is so smooth: "we lunch on sunlight,
    we hang our dreams
    on pigeon wings"
    Thanks for the book recommendation. I also love your quilt treasure. On a recent treasure hunt, I came home with a beautiful watercolor painting of the outer banks.

  10. Your new old quilt is lovely. I'm so happy you rescued it! I LAY MY STITCHES DOWN looks wonderful and from now on I will always think of those workers-up-high as cloud climbers.

  11. Oh I love the ending of your poem. I just read PEACEFUL PIECES by Anna Grossnickle Hines and the quilting in that is stunning!

  12. Thank you for sharing your quilt book and thrif store treasure! Blue Sky in Blossom is a terrific name. I'm in awe of its humble beauty. And then your Cloud Climbers poem—"We stretch/fold/toil and the last stanza that perfectly places them. Wonderful!

  13. I did a double-take there for a moment, I just placed a hold on I LAY MY STITCHES DOWN, we're doing a paper quilt craft at work, and I'm putting together a display. We have quilts that my husband's grandmother made, and it warms my heart to see them spread on my young son's bed.

  14. Irene, I love the poem Cloud Climbers and the title. Great verbs and sounds in your poem; you made me feel like I was there. I love the change or maybe it's a transformation in the last stanza. Such beautiful imagery in these lines "lunch on sunlight" and "hang our dreams on pigeon wings." Thank you for the recommendation of the amazing I Lay My Stitches Down. Your quilt is beautiful. Yesterday, a friend, Julie showed me an heirloom quilt that her great-grandmother stitched over 100 years ago, which she had just inherited from her great-aunt. Julie knows I love quilts. The old, but beautiful quilt was in excellent condition and sewn in different colored flowers in calico material, all made in hexagon shapes! I have never seen a quilt stitched in flowers made of hexagon shapes before. And here you are showing an old quilt with sewn flowers on it! Thank you for sharing all these treasures. :)


Your thoughts?