By Christopher Dewdney
We organize for it every one night, and spend part our lives in its embody, but evening keeps its mysteries. In conversant in THE evening, writer and poet Christopher Dewdney takes readers on a desirable trip during the nocturnal realm. Twelve chapters correspond to the twelve hours of an 'ideal' evening, beginning at 6pm and finishing at 6am, and function issues of departure for night's vital issues; from sunsets, nocturnal animals, bedtime tales, gala's of the evening, fireworks, nightclubs, astronomy, sleep and desires, to the graveyard shift, women of the evening, the artwork of evening, and unending nights. With boundless interest, a lyrical, intimate tone, and one eye on night-time beauties either average and artifical, Dewdney paints an enthralling portrait of the dead nights.
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Extra info for Acquainted with the Night. A Celebration of the Dark Hours
Bruce Bowker himself runs the hotel, and there isn't much that goes on there without him being directly involved, from buying the air conditioners for the rooms to personally supervising dives. The guests are mostly American scuba divers, though there are sometimes a few Europeans and Canadians, and every late afternoon when the sun nears the horizon, a handful of them gather on a covered patio at the ocean's edge for a ritual I was unprepared for, at least the first time. As the sun began to drop behind the sheer, clean line of the ocean horizon, in the stillness that always fell at that hour during clear evenings, everyone would pause their conversations and lean forward intently, looking at the sinking sun.
Certainly they would be familiar with shade, with caves and windowless rooms, but they would find the idea of total darkness covering everything—mountains, deserts, cities, and forests—inconceivable. Using this as a starting point, I found it easier to imagine that I was such a stranger, and that I too was exploring night for the first time. It is this perspective—of recasting the ordinary anew—that I have tried to achieve with this book. The chapters are arranged around a "typical" twelve-hour night, anywhere in the world (though naturally influenced by the fact that I live in Toronto), starting with sunset and ending at dawn.
We are creatures of the day, and night has historically been our adversary, an exception to the rule of light. But in the larger universe the reverse is true, night is the rule and light is the exception. Daylight is bracketed by darkness, and our sun floats within the immensity of an endless cosmic night. But this universal night is not barren: it is the fertile void from which all things, even light itself, are born. Night is profoundly in our souls and minds, our hearts and bodies. It is woven into our language.