At the height of the Lebanese civil war in the 1980s over 100 foreign civilians were taken hostage by Islamic Jihad. As the Archbishop of Canterbury’s special envoy, Terry Waite conducted several successful missions to negotiate the release of numerous hostages.
But in January 1987, while on one of his many visits to Beirut, he was captured himself. Imprisoned for nearly five years, four of them in solitary confinement, he was chained, beaten, frequently blindfolded, and subjected to a mock execution. In this moving sequence of poems and reflections Terry Waite recalls the highs and lows of his life, both during that ordeal and throughout the happier years of humanitarian work that have followed.