Author: Kabura Zakama

The Man Lived

  • Book Category: Poetry
  • ISBN: 978-978-36688-1-1
  • No. of Pages: 77

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Ever since I began to appreciate poetry, I have always sought to share my stories in simple poems. Some people think that I am a difficult person, but I am simple. I strive to live an uncluttered life. I have been through difficult times and as I am squeezed in life’s presses, I find a few poems squirting from my joys and my sadnesses. These poems attempt to tell the story of survival, the story of a man that has been killed several times. But let it be told that ‘the man lived!’ The Man Lived won the 1999 ANA Poetry Prize. I have worked on many of the poems, but they return essential the same. Since it won the prize, I have made several attempts to get them published, but no publisher was willing to take me on. Now I am happy to share them with you. Part One is a collection of poems that try to sift meaning from all kinds of situations and relationships. Here, my favourite is Mother, a simple short story for my mother and many other mothers. Part Two records my attempts at telling the experiences I have had with some locations in Nigeria – Gombi, Otukpo, Lagos, Yola, Ga’anda, Abuja, Lokoja and, of course, Garkida. Part Three is a collection of ‘professional’ poems. These poems have animal themes and I feel particularly close to Fulani Migration, I Killed a Grasshopper and The Preying Mantis. The Bug remains me of times of endurance and Pictures of the Dry Season celebrates my village. I owe the development of Part Four to Al Imfeld. At a poetry/short story seminar at Maiduguri in 1995, Mr Imfeld challenged us to make our poems relevant to the struggles in Nigeria. With some little fear of the military in government then, I began to write poems that speak of military dictators and corrupt politicians. I am proud of these attempts to record my own protest against corruption and injustice. My favourite here is Come Out!, a prophetic rendition that came to pass.

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