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‘By using words I can create the illusion of having power, and this sensation is an addictive substance. We are so small in the unimaginable vastness of the universe.’

Donny O’Rourke visits old haunts in Dumfries and the Borders, ghosted by the bards of Scotland’s past, for the liminal Celtic festival of Samhain.

Julian Turner considers the usefulness of imagination, not just to the writer, but also to the exile and the abused child, and suggests that metaphorical thinking may be psychologically essential.

‘Literature was more life-like that life itself. Between hard covers I began to recognise myself.’