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Transcripts in Water After all

Below are the transcripts, organized alphabetically for video works featured in Water After All.

48 minutes, 30 seconds

[Clock ticking]

[Slow crescendo of instrumental music; wind and waves]

VITO (NIGERIAN REFUGEE): Inside the net there was big, big fish.

[Music and waves continue]

I can’t really explain.

[rippling water; wind chimes]

If anyone fall inside they would eat us because those fish were very big.

[Clock ticking]

[Music and rippling water resume]

The waves, it can even move a house, the waves.

[Music and rippling water continue]

[Radio static]

PAUL KENYON (BBC NEWSCASTER): There were 27 of them on board. None had been to sea before. They come from all across the continent, traveling northwards to the coast.

[Waves crashing]

VITO (NIGERIAN REFUGEE): I shout, “Jesus save me. Jesus save me.”

[Clock ticking; water rippling and crashing]

PAUL KENYON (BBC NEWSCASTER): Numbers reported dead or missing here this year are the highest ever: nearly 500. Last month, on one day, 14 dead bodies were found floating in the sea.

[Wind and waves]

VITO (NIGERIAN REFUGEE): Jesus save me. Jesus save me.

[Echoey music with wind and waves]

PAUL KENYON (BBC NEWSCASTER): They clambered onto one of these: the tuna cage. Exhausted, unable to swim, stranded. The migrants’ boats started taking on water. The people traffickers told them that the crossing would take less than an hour. The pilot swam back to shore. They headed off on what was to become one of the most dramatic survival stories from this year’s crossings.

[Clinking metal; blowing wind]

[Static, then clock ticking; wind blowing; water lapping]

[Clinking metal; blowing wind; rustling sand]

[Glass clinking]

[Female singing opera accompanied variously by the sound of a clock ticking, wind and waves, dolphins squeaking, and seagulls cawing]

[Banjo music playing]

[Clock ticking; whale breaking through water and expelling air; waves and water]


Whatever may still overtake me as fate and experience—a wandering will be therein.

It returns only; it comes home to me at last. In the end one experiences only oneself.

[Water splashing; wind blowing]

MALE SINGING “SPANISH LADIES”: Farewell and adieu to you, Spanish ladies. Farewell and adieu to you ladies of Spain.

[Air being expelled from blowholes; calming music with waves]

[Clock ticking; water splashing]

[Male singing in foreign language]

MALE QUOTING HERMAN MELVILLE, MOBY-DICK: Sometimes I think there's naught beyond, but 'tis enough. He tasks me; he heaps me. What I've dared, I've willed; and what I've willed, I'll do!

[Several gun shots followed by high-pitched squeaking]

[Ominous music and wind]

[Whale expelling air]

[Trickling and rushing of water; grunting breath]

[Gun shots with instrumental music]

[Music continues with waves breaking and occasional wind]

FEMALE QUOTING VIRGINIA WOOLF, TO THE LIGHTHOUSE: Whatever she had wanted to give him, when he left her that morning, she had given him.

“He has landed”

“It is finished.”

She had been right. They had not needed to speak. They had been thinking the same things and he had answered her without her asking him anything.

[Instrumental music; burbling water]


[Waves and wind; music continues]

[Clock ticking]

[Waves breaking; wind rustling]

[Male singing in foreign language; waves breaking underwater; rustle of blowing sand]

[Clock ticking; waves; instrumental music begins again]

[Waves and wind; faint clinking of metal]

MALE QUOTING JOHN NEWTON, THOUGHTS UPON THE AFRICAN SLAVE TRADE: I know the mate of a ship who purchased a young woman with a fine child, about a year old. In the night the child cried much and disturbed his sleep. He rose up in great anger, tore the child from the mother, and threw it into the sea.

Why do I speak of one child when we have heard of over 100 men cast into the sea?

[Calm music with waves breaking and water splashing]

[Whale sounds; waves breaking]

[Male singing in foreign language accompanied by waves crashing and the swoosh of snow tumbling]

[Gunshots; groaning of wounded animal]

[Instrumental music; wind howling]


I leave a white and turbid wake; pale waters, paler cheeks.

Yonder the warm waves blush like wine. The gold brow plumbs the blue.

[Animals braying; whipping sounds]

Is, then, the crown too heavy that I wear? This iron crown.

'Tis iron—that I know—not gold.

[Static; wind; clock ticking]

[Instrumental music]

[Wind and animal grunts]

MALE SPEAKER: Many of the families have waited and wondered for years as to the exact fate of their loved ones. And it’s the form of prolongation of the torture that was applied to the original victims out to members of their families.

[Clock ticking; instrumental music]

FEMALE SPEAKER: Amongst the women who would disappear those who were pregnant were brought to this hospital. As soon as their babies were born, the military took them away.

[Wind blowing; clock ticking]

What exactly happened to the mothers of the missing babies after isn’t clear. One known method of disposing of them was with what’s become known as the death flights.

[Wind blowing through trees; helicopter wings faintly whirring]

MALE SPEAKER: Every Wednesday on average between 20 and 30 people were designated to die. They were taken to the planes. During the flight they were undressed. Once the captain of the flight said we were in the right area they were thrown out into the waters over the South Atlantic.

[Faint waves and wind]

[Large splash]

[Swooshing; metal wobbling; wind blowing faintly]

[Female singing opera with sounds of underwater life]

[Instrumental music and electricity swooshing and sizzling]

[Static; waves crashing]

[Instrumental string music]

MALE QUOTING HEATHCOTE WILLIAMS, WHALE NATION: Free from land-based pressures larger brains evolved, ten times as old as man's.

The accumulated knowledge of the past.

Rumors of ancestors, memories of loss, memories of ideal love.

[Whale breaking through water]

Deep down in another country, moving at a different tempo.

[Whale expelling air]

[Bubbling water and whales singing; then screeching and waves crashing]

[Wind and waves]

[Wind; whale faintly expelling air]

[Clock ticking; waves]

[Water splashing; wind blowing]

[Wind instruments; storm rolling in]

[Plink of water, then woman singing opera; whale singing]

[Blast of harpoon cannons; water spraying]

[Deep groaning; seagulls cawing]

[Waves crashing; wind blowing; soft instrumental music]

[Crackling of earth]

[Variously bells chiming; clock ticking; whale sounds; with ominous string music playing]

[Wind and thunder; music continues]

[Wind blowing and rustling of sand]

MALE SPEAKER: Bruno Bigeard came up with the idea . . .

[Wind instruments; rustling of sand and leaves]

. . . pick them up from the Casbah, question them; after that, tie heavy objects around their feet, then fly them out to sea.

[Thunder; wind instruments]

[Howling wolves; wind faintly blowing]

[Whale sounds; water lapping; wind instruments; steam hissing]

[Waves crashing; crescendo of instrumental music]

MALE SPEAKER: They are desperate people who found a desperate remedy. Only 40 percent of the people who set out from Vietnam by boat to reach Hong Kong ever made it.

[Indistinct chatter and crying]

Given the 50,000 or so who have reached Hong Kong, that means a much bigger number drowned on the way.

[Rumbling, then underwater noises; soft instrumental music]

[Soft rattling; male and female chanting in foreign languages; music continues]

[Majestic music; thunder and waves crashing]

[Music continues with underwater noises]

[Seagulls cawing; waves breaking]

[Female singing opera; waves crashing]

[Seagulls cawing; whale noises]

[Indistinct radio chatter; wind and waves; whale expelling air]

[Waves; creaking metal; blasting of harpoon cannons]

[Ominous music; waves]

[Seagulls cawing; waves breaking; whale sounds]

[Whale sounds; wind blowing]

[Ominous music; wind and waves]

[Bell softly clanking; music continues]

[Slurp of meat being cut; bells clanking; liquid splashing]

[Metal clinking; birds chirping]

[Butterfly wings flapping; birds chirping]

[Slurp of meat being moved; metal clinking; birds chirping]

[Butterfly wings flapping; wind instruments playing]

[Slurp of meat being moved; metal clinking and scraping]

[Butterfly wings flapping; wind instruments playing]

[Music continues]

[Buzzing of insects; music continues]

[Waves gently lapping then crashing; majestic music plays]

[Instrumental music crescendos; air spraying from blowhole]

[Music continues; waves breaking]

[Squeaking of bats; roll of thunder; music continues]

[Waves softly breaking; instrumental music]

[Squeaking of bats; instrumental music]

[Instrumental music]