A Scots-based spoken-word poet has spoken of her delight after being chosen as poet in residence at this year's Glastonbury Festival.

Katie Ailes, who lives in Edinburgh, and whose work has appeared in The Herald, has said she is "over the moon" to have been selected.

The Herald: Katie AilesKatie Ailes (Image: Colin Mearns)

In a post on Facebook she added: "Glasto is iconic, and I'm still pinching myself that I have the honour of representing and documenting it", she added.

"I've been writing poems in the lead-up to the festival... and I'll be writing several poems during the festival about my experiences there. I'll also be performing a set on Sunday afternoon. This will be my first time going and I honestly can't wait!"

Ailes, who works as a researcher, a performer, and an event programmer in the field of spoken-word poetry, has already appeared in two video posted to social media by the Glastonbury Festival, in which she reads her new poems, 'I've Never Been', and 'Building'.

The first poem begins: "I've never been. I usually watch on TV, see the headliners' sets as the sun sets over Somerset, and I am so jealous of everyone out in that field.

Read more: Digital verse: How do I love thee...let me count my Instagram followers

"Like my friends, last year, who returned muddy and sunburnt but bursting with stories. Stories of being so close to the stage for their favourite band they could see the bassist playing every note. Stories told with hoarse throats of singing 'til their voices were lost..."

Read more: Interview: Glastonbury's Poet in Residence Katie Ailes, 'I'm still pinching myself!'

In an interview on Tuesday with the online arts and culture magazine, The Understudy, Ailes, who is also a dancer, said: "The main job of the Poet in Residence is documenting the festival through poetry. I've written two poems in the lead-up to Glastonbury and I'll be writing several more during and following the festival.

The Herald: Poet and dancer Katie Ailes (on the right) in 2002 at the launch of Figures of Speech: a new event series during Scotland's Year of StoriesPoet and dancer Katie Ailes (on the right) in 2002 at the launch of Figures of Speech: a new event series during Scotland's Year of Stories (Image: Colin Hattersley Photography)

"It's such a wonderful role because it requires you to open yourself to inspiration, to fully explore what the festival offers and translate those experiences through poetry.

"I want what I write to represent Glastonbury's fantastic diversity - not just music but theatre, conversation, comedy, physical artistry, circus, installations, etc - so I'll be adventuring around as many fields and stages as possible (with the caveat that I'll definitely miss some things - it's the nature of the beast!).

"I'm hoping to find a balance between being in the moment enjoying what's happening and scribbling away in a notebook".

Ailes will performs in the festival's Poetry&Words tent on Sunday.

Read more: "In 25 years I think people will look back on this as the golden age." From the stage to the page, Scottish poetry is very much on the rise

According to a description on the Luath publisher's website, Ailes grew up in southeastern Pennsylvania and attended Bates College in Lewiston, Maine, graduating summa cum laude in English, Dance, and Education.

On her website she says that in 2020 she completed a PhD at Strathclyde University, focused on the performance and perception of authenticity in contemporary UK spoken word poetry.

The Herald: Festival-goers getting into the Glastonbury spirit todayFestival-goers getting into the Glastonbury spirit today (Image: PA Wire)

Her research included a large-scale oral history study with 70 UK-based poets and promoters.

In 2015 she completed an MRes in English at Strathclyde on a US-UK Fulbright Award, focusing on poetry written for the 2014 independence referendum.

In 2015 she co-organised the Poetic Politics: Culture and the 2014 Scottish Independence Referendum, One Year On conference at the National Library of Scotland, and in 2016 she co-edited the anthology Aiblins: New Scottish Political Poetry, published by Luath.