To Bahia And Beyond

Poets Simon Armitage and Glyn Maxwell cross the equator and enter the southern hemisphere for the first time at the start of a thousand-mile journey from Salvador on the east coast of Brazil to the Amazon rain forest.

They also share some poetry inspired by the experience.

Episodes

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01Candomble And Carnival19970901

Poets Simon Armitage and Glyn Maxwell cross the equator and enter the southern hemisphere for the first time at the start of a thousand-mile journey from Salvador on the east coast of Brazil to the Amazon rain forest.

They also share some poetry inspired by the experience.Salvador, capital of Bahia, has an African soul.

The sound of the drum is never far away, as the two poets discover when they sample the music and dance of the city and the African religion Candomble.

02A City Of Contrasts19970902

The Lacerda elevator, which connects the upper city with the lower city, has become a symbol of progress for Salvador, one of the fastest-growing cities in Brazil.

As well as dancing in the streets during the festival of Bonfim, the two poets visit a centre for street children and meet writer Jorge Amado, once exiled during the military dictatorship, at his home in the city.

03Up Stream Without A Paddle19970903

A visit to the opera house in Manaus.

And a two-day boat trip upstream which ends unexpectedly and gets the journey to the rainforest off to a bad start.

04Fishing The Sky19970904

At the Xixuau reserve, on the banks of the river, thoughts turn to food.

A night fishing trip under the Southern stars hauls in piranha and rainbow bass, and a foray through the reserve's plantation to gather bananas and manioc leads to a nest of fire ants.

05 LASTGoodbye To The Xixuau19970905

After a wet night spent in hammocks under the rainforest canopy, the two writers set off with a guide on a walk which takes them to the furthest point in their journey, both physically and poetically.

Homesickness and a nostalgia for bricks and mortar sets in.