Anthology of light poems bound by a simple thread
Posted Thursday, July 26 2012 at 19:57
Going by the Greek root of the word — poie-ma — a poem denotes something that is created.
Often, poetry sprouts from the humblest of creative soils, but blossoms into something bigger than its creator, assuming a life of its own, deciding its own destiny in a universe replete with a multiplicity of other created things.
And this is what happened to Heart to Heart, the anthology of reflective poetry published by Daystar University’s Centre for Research, Publications and Consultancy.
In his foreword to the anthology which features seven poets, former Daystar University Vice-Chancellor Godfrey Nguru said the seed of the book was planted one day as he sat listening to a poem on environmental conservation.
After listening to the poem by Purity Kiambi — a lecturer and writer — the don challenged her to get it published. And, as fate would have it, the seed of a book was sawn.
The anthology is divided into seven themes, from nature and society to politics, from celebrations of life and friendship to contemplation of death and dying.
As creators, poets can play God. Poems are, after all, the fruit of their imaginations. It is within their power to say: “Let there be beauty” and this comes to pass.
But, and this is also significant, poets also play man. By feeling the pain of humanity, by speaking about the things that make them sing and make them weep, poets can reach to the heart of the things that drive humanity and yank from it the subtle truths that make the rest of us sit and ponder about the meaning of life.
This duality permeates the anthology edited by Larry Ndivo and Miriam Maranga Musonye. Some of the poems are frail to the point of being fragile.
Some, like Don Awene’s Write me a Poem, are, to borrow his own words, “a gentle odyssey of the mind, to a gentler world of sparkling springs”.
Others are bold and have the audacity of eagles, soaring high, giving the reader unrivalled perspectives on life and living, like Musonye’s celebration of the desert.
Endless spread of sand
Hot, dry and barren
From what inner well
Does your oasis spring?
The poets are bound by a simple thread: All are working or have worked at Daystar University. But that is where their similarities end, regardless of whether one is examining their themes, style or career paths, except may be if you delve into the unpretentious simplicity of their verse.
Like freshly picked berries, their poems are easy to digest. Once every often, the trained eye will stumble on the oddly flat word or phrase that stands out from the creative tapestry like a dry twig in a green patch. But then again would creation be complete without such?