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I wandered lonely as a cloud...
Noctilucent. What a delicious word. It describes those high-altitude clouds which catch the rays of the setting sun long after it has fallen below the horizon, or which glow in the first light of dawn, in anticipation of the sun's rising. Of course these noctilucent clouds may have different shapes, long filaments or fluffy pillows, in streaks or in ripples.
Noctilucent is not the only appealing word to describe clouds. Even the basic cirrus, cumulus, stratus and nimbus are appealing. Then there's undulatus asperatus, also called asperitas, which apparently isn't an official title yet but which describes a weird wavy cloud undersurface that's typically seen in the skies over the North American plains.
Most cloud-type names are derived from Latin though there are a few formations which have their own nickname. The Morning Glory cloud is a strange wave of cloud. In Burketown, the Morning Glory cloud rolls in from the Gulf of Carpentaria during spring in the southern hemisphere. It looks amazing and is also a challenge and delight for gliders and hang-gliders. This type of roll cloud is also called a shelf cloud, arcus or even an undular bore. Lovely!
A mackerel sky or buttermilk sky has lots and lots of little altocumulus clouds looking like the markings on the skin of a type of mackerel. As for the buttermilk, I've never quite worked out whether the sky is supposed to resemble the foam on the top of the buttermilk or a slightly curdled effect…
So, go out and observe the clouds. Catch their changing forms and colours. And tell me what your favourite 'cloud' word is.