HURRY NOW (A personal poem from long ago) with notes and an intro by Su’eddie Vershima Agema

I found this poem somewhere on my system from many years ago. I think it was a test from one of our English lessons, maybe Introduction to Creative Writing II or Poetry or something. I do remember the course lecturer though, (now Professor) Moses Tsenongu, himself a poet that we looked up to, a past Chairman of the Association of Nigerian Authors (Benue State Chapter), a position I would eventually come to occupy years later.

It was one of my first less playful poems. The assignment was to write a Valentine poem. Some of my friends asked me how I would conjure one up, since I was not in any relationship. They had healthy laughs at me. Well, I smiled and put on my imaginative hat.

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WORKING TO GIVE BIRTH TO CHINUA EZENWA-OHAETO’S THE TEENAGER WHO BECAME MY MOTHER

Hello world, I have been absent from here for a bit and my health has been a part of the reasons but there are some conversations that need to keep on being had. So, let’s get to one of them…

It is no news that the SEVHAGE chapbook series is coming back in full, or is it? Okay, maybe. But I am sure it is no news that Chinua Ezenwa-Ohaeto won our SEVHAGE/Angya Poetry Prize 2019 (supported by Eunice Spring of Life Foundation). I guess the news is that we are releasing the winning poem, ‘Every Month a Year’ alongside other poems from his entry and others into a chapbook, ‘The teenager who became my mother.’

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Dance amongst the Hurricanes (A Poem) by Fubaraibi Anari Benstowe

The fires that could not consume us
Made our bones metals
This is how boys are forged into men

The world is for tungsten hearts
Men who dare their beast in the  face
And carry their mountains in baskets

The world is for those who dance
In gatherings of hurricanes
And still survive its suffocation.

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THE UNTOLD PRAYERS OF A MAIDUGURIAN MALLAM (A POEM) by Abdulbaki A Ahmad

O the Just Judge, master of these semiconducting troglodytes,
O the master of cockroaches and rats, the maker of penises that’d
Only sleep in a cold, unripened hearth of immature girls
O the sculptor of death whose buttocks are blacker than the Haramist flag,
master of my mother’s gasp, the dexterous planner of her fragile eyes

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YOU HAVE WRITER’S BLOCK BECAUSE YOU HAVE NOT GIVEN YOURSELF PERMISSION: NICK MAKOHA AND ANOTHER OXFORD EXPERIENCE

The question of writer’s block is one that most writers face, discuss and just make a million excuses of. Several people have given their reasons for why it is there, explaining in scientific and ordinary terms but on January 16th, 2019 at Nick Makoha’s workshop in Oxford – which I attended – we got another view to it.

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