In this episode, Theo Padnos reads “The Drunken Boat” by Arthur Rimbaud. Padnos is an American writer and journalist. In 2012, he was kidnapped and held captive for two years by an Al Qaeda affiliate in Syria. His new book about the experience, Blindfold: A Memoir of Capture, Torture, and Enlightenment, was described in the Atlantic as “the best of the genre, profound, poetic, and powerful.”
Arthur Rimbaud was a French symbolist poet born in 1854. He composed “The Drunken Boat” when he was just 16 years old, and stopped writing poetry altogether in his early twenties.
“The Drunken Boat” by Arthur Rimbaud, translated by Wallace Fowlie, appears in Rimbaud: Complete Works, Selected Letters, published by University of Chicago Press.
Blindfold: A Memoir of Capture, Torture, and Enlightenment by Theo Padnos is available now from Simon & Schuster. To learn more about Theo’s story, we also recommend the documentary Theo Who Lived directed by David Schisgall.
We feature one short listener poem at the end of every episode. To submit, call the Haiku Hotline at 612-440-0643 and read your poem after the beep. For the occasional prompt, follow us on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.