THE BURDEN OF POETISING (Part 2)

What happens to a dream deferred?” Langston Hughes

 

When Walter Lowenfels and Michael Fraenkel began their short-lived publishing venture before 1930, they hoped to publish artists anonymously thereby highlighting art rather than the ego of the artist. Noble as the movement was, its eventual demise could be largely traced to a paucity of contributions by artists, a great many of whom must have considered anonymity too exorbitant a price to pay knowing that their success in the arts industry depended highly on their fame. Continue reading

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THE BURDEN OF POETISING (Part 1)

Can we agree that there exists this realm of creativity into which the artist’s mind must soar or descend before they can create? Can we also agree that this realm is a ‘restricted area’, accessed only by those minds that have found ways to locate the access ports, which might be what the music composer, Yanni, means by ‘the keys to the imagination’? Is it impossible to imagine poets as miners of imageries who have to erect derricks over the hard shell that incases the realm of creativity? Is it not reasonable to believe that the poet’s first attempts will either drill too deep, to reach the dregs, or go too shallow, to suck up the watery parts? If so, would it then not be unfair or premature to judge poets based on their not-so-impressive debut works since only through constant practice and perseverance can one master the art of projecting the shaft to the proper degree? Continue reading

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ARTS AS A TOOL FOR SOCIAL CHANGE: REVIEW OF DUMEBI EZAR EHIGIATOR’S WRECKED

 

 

Title: WRECKED

Author: Dumebi Ezar Ehigiator

Publisher: Winepress Publishing

Number of pages: 201

Year of publication: 2016

Category: Fiction

 

 

 

“Indeed, the moment that an artist takes notice of what other people want, and tries to supply the demand, he ceases to be an artist, and becomes a dull or an amusing craftsman, an honest or dishonest tradesman. He has no further claim to be considered as an artist.”

Oscar Wilde, The Soul of Man under Socialism. Continue reading

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Psychoanalysing Abubakar Adam Ibrahim’s Season of Crimson Blossoms

Season of Crimson Blossoms is another complex story told in the most simplest of form. In summary, the story is about Hajiya Binta whose withering life finally gets to blossom at age fifty-five when she starts going to bed with a certain miscreant popularly called Reza, who reminds her very much of her late son, and how their love affair finally crashes under the barrage of censorious society and a number of independent factors. From the very beginning of the story, the reader becomes aware of a thick blanket of grey cloud over-hanging heroine’s head, indicating that the tale will end in no other way than tragic. Seeing that Hajiya Binta’s premonition– symbolized by the pungent smell of cockroaches– and tragic events have a perfect positive correlation, it would be understandable if one thought that perhaps if she had taken out a little time to pray rather than scouring her room in search of the non-existent cockroaches, things would have played out differently on that fateful day. Continue reading

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DANTALA, THE CAT WITH NINE LIVES: A Review of Elnathan John’s Born on a Tuesday

Title: Born on a Tuesday
Author: Elnathan John
Publisher: Cassava Republic
Number of pages: 261
Year of publication: 2015
Category: Fiction

The problem with such books as Elnathan John’s Born on a Tuesday is that they set higher standards for debut works thereby making things a little bit difficult for aspiring and yet-to-be-published writers. Not a lot of writers can boast of the ability to write in English in a way that readers keep imagining they are dealing with a Hausa story. Continue reading

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WHEN THE GODS ARE SLOW TO ACT: A Review of Friday John Abba’s Alekwu Night Dance

Title: Alekwu Night Dance
Author: Friday John Abba
Publisher: Write Words Consulting
Number of pages: 115
Year of publication: 2013
Category: Play

A member of Council, a supposed pillar in the land, is driven by nothing short of envy and malice to the point of contracting a lunatic to deflower the belle of the land. But things go awry and the agent ends up killing her after taking her life. This sacrilege sets off the dark music that forces Alekwu, the deity of the land, to a macabre dance. Continue reading

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THE ILLUSION OF THE ‘HEALTHY IMMIGRANT’: A Note on Rudolf Ogoo Okwonko’s This American Life Sef

Title: This American Life Sef
Author: Rudolf Ogoo Okonkwo
Publisher: Winepress Publishing
Number of pages: 94
Year of publication: 2016

You behold America the beautiful. The triple-decker burger and the giant cup of coke and cars that are wider than your village road and you wonder what took you so long to get here. You get on with schooling… you study the things people who came before you say brings money– the things Americans do not want to study– to prepare you for the job Americans do not want to do. You hear nursing, bloody, nursing. You say, bring it on (‘This American Life’, p 39) Continue reading

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Decaying Romance: A Review of Jumoke Verissimo’s The Birth of Illusion


Title: The Birth of Illusion
Author: Jumoke Verissimo
Publisher: Fullpoint Publications And Communications
Number of pages: 83
Year of publication: 2015
Category: Poetry
ISBN: 978-978-946-697-9


“Let there be spaces in our togetherness”. Khalil Gibran

Love, attraction, cohabitation and marriage are few of the dozen topics that have intrigued individuals, cultures and civilizations. Psychologists, sociologists, philosophers and poets have already written and sang volumes on those subjects yet every new generation takes it upon itself to explore them and try to understand them. The third part of The Birth of Illusion, which starts from the 52nd page, revisits those age-old subjects. Continue reading

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BEARDS: THE HAVES AND THE HAVE-NOT.

The beardless small-statured man, who is easily mistaken for a ‘small boy’, is the most miserable among men. He is derided by the bearded twenty-one year old. He is pushed about and even knocked on…

Source: BEARDS: THE HAVES AND THE HAVE-NOT.

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In Defence of Simplicity: Review of Tolu’ Akinyemi’s I Laugh at These Skinny Girls

At first blush, the title of this book would suggest body-shaming, a particular kind of body-shaming targeted at ‘skinny girls’ who are possibly influenced by the glamourization of ultra-thin models in the entertainment industry; ‘skinny girls’ who have possibly been brainwashed by the media to pursue skinniness through self-starvation and other unhealthy means; skinny girls who should rather be ‘understood’ and even celebrated. Continue reading

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