Belmont Club

Letters by dark

Information technology in 1936. Remembering a time when the world was held together by letters written on paper. Paper which was carried by on trains like the Night Mail.


Night Mail is a 1936 documentary film about a London, Midland and Scottish Railway (LMS) mail train from London to Scotland, produced by the GPO Film Unit. A poem by English poet W. H. Auden was specially written for it, used in the closing few minutes, as was music by Benjamin Britten. … As recited in the film, the poem’s rhythm imitates that of the train’s wheels as they clatter over the track sections, beginning slowly but picking up speed so that by the time the narration reaches the penultimate verse the narrator is speaking at a breathless pace. As the train slows toward its destination the final verse is taken at a more sedate pace. The famous opening lines of the poem are “This is the Night Mail crossing the border / Bringing the cheque and the postal order”.

“But who can bear to feel himself forgotten”

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Part 2

Part 3

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