TITLE: 19 GHAZAL STREET
AUTHOR: LAURA KAMINSKI ( HALIMA AYUBA)
PUBLISHER: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
PUBLICATION DATE: JUNE 30 2016
FORMAT: PAPERBACK, CHAPBOOK
NO OF PAGES: 34
In my formative years as a poet (I’m still in that stage though), I was resistant to lesser known forms such as Ghazal. As a matter of fact, I didn’t fancy any poems that experimented. But this would change. With time this would change as I began to open myself up to different forms. This was the point Ghazal came to me. My first encounter with the form came a couple of years back, while trying to get into the world of the great Indian-American poet, Agha Shahid Ali. Through Ali, I came to know Ghazal. Ghazal came to know me.
Laura Kaminski’s 19 Ghazal Street begins from the interior (within): “It’s claimed that the heart is the place of affection/And yet some seem so hard, no trace of affection.” And ends on the exterior (outside) “It’s raining again, so she goes out to re-read a poem, gets wet/ Halima suspects that much still depends on that wheelbarrow’s message.” This projection from the interior to the exterior is the vehicle, upon which the poems in this fantastic book move. The book consists of 19 Ghazals, many of which deal with different subjects, ranging from topic such as love: “some poets write sonnets, they even say love, but/ Halima is hidden, an ace of action,” to religion: “They have made a suggestion to limit entry to non-Muslim./ But you cannot pick faith from your teeth, heretic floss on your lips.
Here is a book that in my estimation, no amount of words I pour on this page can capture the eclecticism and brilliant diversification of humanness it explored. No justice can be done, except you go out there and get a copy of this sacred brilliance.
By D.M. Aderibigbe