Irene Howat – The Crackit Cup – 20 April 2018

Irene Howat, an Ayr woman, is a prolific writer of many different Christian biographies as well as multiple children’s books and biographies. At our last meeting Irene entertained us with a series of verses from her latest poetry publication – ‘The Crackit Cup’. The poems are crafted around a fictitious central character ‘Tam’ who was born in 1905 and who spent his teenage war years supporting those in his village who had been left behind: mothers, fathers, brothers, wives and widows. He encouraged them to keep alive the memories of their beloved menfolk. When Tam died some years later and the young laird who had been a major in the war spoke of ‘Tam’s war’ there was hardly a dry eye in the congregation.

Irene recited her poems in both English and Scots dialects (she said that English was in her head but that Scots was in her heart).

Lynn McWilliam, in her vote of thanks, described Irene as a female Robert Burns and said that although the trauma of war was not fully understood by most of us, we must never forget those who lived through, or were killed or damaged in the Great War.