Afghan Refugee by Rohan Chhetri

From her shoulder blade the background softens, where her scarf, once-draped over her head, vanishes into a green eel of silence. Something tells me this was hurried. Her running behind a gaggle of school girls she hasn’t learnt the names of yet- always the slow one-when she was beckoned. A land in its plea has spilled its mood of calamity…

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The Size of Grief by Lydia Kasese

My mother carries a bone on her back too heavy to latch on our sorrows. On most nights we can hear her crying loudly into her pillow, Her teeth biting on her tongue willing it not to come to life, And bring back all those it had lost. We watch her from a distance too afraid to say anything, That…

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Sanctificum by Chris Abani – Chekwube O. Danladi

TITLE: SANCTIFICUM AUTHOUR: CHRIS ABANI PUBLISHER: COPPER CANYON PRESS PUBLICATION DATE: 2016 GENRE: POETRY NO OF PAGES: 356 FORMAT: PAPERBACK   Committed to ritual, to invocation, Chris Abani’s Sanctificum calls for a transcendence of emotional potential, encourages its reader to become unhinged in its exploration of loss and remembering, of movement and stasis. This is a text that teaches, that…

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Maybe This is How I die by Rumbi Makanga

Maybe this is how I die. It’s past midnight and there is no one else around. The darkness has a sweetness to it, like the smell of earth right after the rain has fallen. I want to lick the pavement. I want to run off the beach, maybe even throw my clothes off on the way, and go kiss the…

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Five Stations for Various by Richard Ali

I Flame Lines Lying there, I set fire to your bed Flame lines around you, curl heat of ink Watch you turn your torso, see in the mirror a bird Earth flown, goddess born, writhing, mazariyya—dragon bird! I come to your myths with lies of my own—these Dross of my story. You whispered in my ears once What impels herdsmen,…

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Season of Crimson Blossoms by Abubakar Adam Ibrahim – Opeyemi Razak Oyadiran

TITLE: SEASON OF CRIMSON BLOSSOMS AUTHOR: ABUBAKAR ADAM  IBRAHIM PUBLISHER: PARRESIA YEAR OF PUBLICATION: 2015 GENRE: FICTION FORMAT: PAPERBACK NO OF PAGES: 320   Abubakar’s debut novel opens rather jarringly into the confluence of societal and religious obligations (restrictions?), political discord and its agents, the much ignored trauma of survivors of religious clashes, all revolving around  a taboo love trying…

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Portrait of My Mother as a Child by Jessica Marion Modi

As if she’s about to tell a secret from her childhood, or mine. Lips almost open, scrunched brow, suspicious of someone looking at her this way. Hanging from pointy shoulders, her dress preserves marks from her mother’s disciplined ironing, straight creases down to her dirty, white sneakers. She balances on the toe of one foot, heel of the other. Arms…

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Interrogating a Continent’s Rhythm: Conversation with Three Illuminating Voices

Titilope Shonuga, Nigeria’s inaugural Poet Laureate, curator of the hugely successful SoulFest “Becoming” and Intel “She Will Connect” Ambassador combines the capacity for heightened utterance with an urbane cheekiness. Harriet Anena, Ugandan poet and short story writer burst into the continent’s consciousness with her first book of poems “A NATION IN LABOUR” and her fierce performance piece “I BOW FOR…

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Blackass by A. Igoni barret – Opeyemi Razak Oyadiran

TITLE: BLACKASS AUTHOR: A. IGONI BARRET PUBLISHER: GRAYWOLF PUBLICATION DATE: MARCH 1 2016 GENRE: FICTION FORMAT: PAPERBACK NO OF PAGES: 272 Blackass is a boisterous dark comedy  filled with satirical insights on contemporary Nigeria that is pure Igoni, race, social media and its shallowness and mockery of the duplicity that is human nature, all set in the Lagos, the metropolis…

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what is the boy who drags his solitudes outdoors by Peter Akinlabi

(for yomi ogunsanya) what is the boy who drags his solitudes outdoors, setting up a garden in a skeined place, where he skims books in proximate images. he imagines, there, in a memory a little bit different, he might unlearn the swaddling language of early traumas, and walk the knotted shadows to light. in dreams, he often returns to pain…

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