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18th September – On This Day In History

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Born:

1971 Lance Armstrong (cyclist – won Tour de France seven times, but got banned for using drugs)

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Died:

1970 Jimi Hendrix (guitarist – Purple Haze)

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On This Day:

2017 Hurricane Maria destroys 90% of the structures in the Dominica and kills 27 people

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Have a good Tuesday, 18th September

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New York, September 12, 2001

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‘Then it went dark. Real dark. Like snow.’
—words of a survivor

will the hand endure moving over this paper
will any poem have enough weight
to leave a line of flight above the desolate landscape
ever enough face to lift against death’s dark silence
who will tell today

the huge anthill of people remains quiet
somber and bright but obscure
as if the brown effluvium of sputtering towers
sweeps still the skyline with a filthy flag
who will weep today

today images wail for voice behind the eyes
planes as bombs stuffed with shrapnel of soft bodies
then the fire inferno flame-flowers from skyscrapers
human flares like falling angels from the highest floor
down, down all along shimmering buildings of glass and steel
fluted in abandoned beauty and fluttering
weightless and willowy and flame-winged to streamline
fleeting reflections in the fugitive language of forgetting
the hellhound of destruction has a red tongue of laughter

who will tell and who will count
gouged eyes do not understand the blue of sky
through a dismal and chilly nuclear winter
people stumble people shuffle
stumble-people shuffle-people worm-white-people

where lie the faces
old before their end or their wedding
grayed in ashes from head to toe
as if clothed in coats of the snowing knowing of ages

beneath rummage and debris rosy corpses move and mumble
and in East River confidential files and folders float
with shreds and feathers lacerated human meat
scorched confetti for the dog’s feast
who will tell tomorrow tomorrow

where are the faces
will the tongue still think
still pulse its dark lair
with flamed memory of bliss
will words still drink oblivion
will any poem some day ever carry sufficient weight
to leave the script of scraps recalling fall and forgetting

will death remain quivering in the paper

 

– Breyten Breytenbach

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16th September – On This Day In History

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Born:

1952 Micky Rourke (actor)

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Died:

2016 Edward Albee (playwright – Who’s Afraid Of Virginia Woolfe?)

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On This Day:

1857 Mexico adopts its constitution 

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Have a good Sunday, 16th September

14th September – On This Day In History

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Born:

1957 Kepler Wessels (South African cricketer)

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Died:

2009 Patrick Swayze (actor & dancer – Dirty Dancing)

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On This Day:

2012 Ferry sinks off Indonesia, killing 21

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Have a good Friday, 14th September

13th September – On This Day In History

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Born:

1916 Roald Dahl (author – Charlie And The Chocolate Factory)

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Died:

1996 Tupac Shakur (rapper & actor)

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On This Day:

1979 Venda is granted independence by South Africa (but not recognised outside of South Africa)

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Have a good Thursday, 13th September

12th September – On This Day In History

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Born:

1944 Barry White (singer)

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Died:

2003 Johnny Cash (country singer)

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On This Day:

1848 Switzerland becomes  federal state

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Have a good Wednesday, 12th September

11th September – On This Day In History

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Born:

1885 DH Lawrence (poet and author – Lady Chatterley’s Lover)

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Died:

1994 Jessica Tandy (actress – Driving Miss Daisy)

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On This Day:

2001 Hijacked airliners are deliberately flown by terrorists into the World Trade Center Towers in New York City. Another is crashed into the Pentagon and another is crashed as hijacked victims fight to regain control of the aircraft.

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Have a good Tuesday, 11th September