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the band begins to play in the land of submarines our friends are all aboard many more of them live next door we lived beneath the waves
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on Darkness [Thursday | 090904 | 00:22]
Real dark is thicker and quieter, it fills up the spaces between your jacket and your heart. It gets in your eyes. When I have to be out late at night, it's not knives and kicks I'm afraid of, through there are plenty of those behind walls and hedges. I'm afraid of the Dark. You, who walk so cheerfully, whistling your way, stand still for five minutes. Stand still in the Dark in a field or down a track. It's then you know you're there on sufferance. The Dark only lets you take one step at a time. Step and the Dark closes round your back. In front, there is no space for you until you take it. Darkness is absolute. Walking in the Dark is like swimming underwater except you can't come up for air.

Lie still at night and Dark is soft to touch, such a sweet smotherer. In the country we rely on the moon, and when the moon is out, no light can penetrate the window. The window is walled over and cast in a perfect black surface. Does it feel the same to the blind? I used to think so, but I've been told not. A blind peddler who visited us regularly laughed at my stories of the Dark and said the Dark was his wife. We bought our pails from him and fed him in the kitchen. He never spilt his stew or missed his mouth the way I did. "I can see," he said, "but I don't use my eyes."

from The Passion by Jeanette Winterson
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While the World Sleeps Part 3 [Wednesday | 090804 | 00:52]

Poets sing for all the world in one breast. They sing for all those who need the unique nourishment of the poetic. Poets may choose to align themselves with the wretched and the voiceless of thisplanet. They may not. But they must draw to themselves heaven's aid, for their calling is absorbing and demanding, rigorous as conscience and elusive as freedom. They could, if they choose (and their choice is dictated by the quality of their love) breathe unease on complacency, stir the meek against injustic, help the blind to see, and, to appropriate what Pascal said about the parables of Christ, blind those who can see. Where there is misery they might be moved to soothe, to rouse, to sing of revolt, to spread hope and deeper dreams of liberation.

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While the World Sleeps Part 2 [Wednesday | 090804 | 00:39]

Hunger is an antagonist. Different kinds of hunger. Society can be defined as the sphere in which all our hungers meet, as in a great chaotic marketplace. The poet's hunger is our hunger, which is far more life. We all feel that terrible pull sometimes. We are all being herded down, tricked along, illusory highways which seem to lead nowhere, except only to the grave. Did we choose our roads? Did our roads choose us? Did we arrive on them by proxy?

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While the World Sleeps Part 1 [Wednesday | 090804 | 00:32]
by Ben Okri
'The poet is he who inspires far more
than he who is inspired.'
- Paul Eluard


The world in which the poet lives does not necessarily yield up the poetic. In the hands of the poet, the world is resistant. It is only with the searching and the moulding that the unyielding world becomes transformed in a new medium of song and metaphor.

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