Ruth Padel: Writing Nature in Poetry and Prose

Ruth Padel is the author of Darwin: A Life in Poems and Tigers in Red Weather.

Reading excerpts from her prose and poetry, including some unpublished verse, award-winning poet Padel discussed how she translates her passion for conservation and science into both forms of writing.

Ruth Padel is an award-winning poet, critic and novelist who has been acclaimed for her nature writing in multiple genres. She is currently Writer in Residence at the Environment Institute, University College, London. Her poetry collections include Darwin: A Life in Poems, a verse biography of Charles Darwin, her great-great grandfather.

Her non-fiction includes Tigers in Red Weather, an account of her journeys through Asian forests to learn about tiger conservation, and two books on reading contemporary poems, 52 Ways of Reading a Poem and The Poem and the Journey. Her first novel, Where the Serpent Lives, explores wildlife crime and human relations with the wild in India, London and Devon.

“Evocative depictions of life in the fast-degrading forests of India. She paints an apocalyptic picture of the ways in which the world’s wild animals are being endangered not only by the greed of criminals but also by the peasant’s desperate search for sustenance in economies interested only in development.”

— The Independent