Saviour Willie his 2017 submission were food, it would be Afang soup with endless esam and he says that the shortlist is what he expected; a squadron of highbrow haijins.
What drew you into the competition?
I stay in Port Harcourt. That said, I revert to your question. My motivation is an iron-headed highbrow young Nigerian and a versatile photographer ,writer and News Editor at Neptrendz TV, Obaji-Nwali Shegun. He is my mentor and a bad literary influenza. He continued to nudge me until I turned a hot-headed Haijin. He thought me firsthand to experiment with HAIKU. And if you check out my haiku. You will see words divided by a space where fire sparkled. And a very bazaar machination. He’s been organizing programs all over Port Harcourt to spread the exquisite beauty he continued to claim he spotted in haiku. And I am his humble student. And he is my Haiku master. When I forwarded to him the Haiku I intend submitting out for this contest, he Edited and returned to me three haiku that blew my skull away.
If I say he wrote the shortlisted Haiku am only nearing the truth. So, I joined this competition because a 19year old Nigerian, Obaji-Nwali Shegun thoroughly lectured and inundated me in the art. I deal a thumb high for him. And I wasn’t surprised he was shortlisted. He had always wanted to tell The world the cajoling effects of alcohol in Africa, and the need for the decrease in the amount of ethanol injected into the beers shipped into the continent. He is my motivation. my Haiku questioned African night,
What has gone wrong with our night that an old man who have seen all things sauntered out of his armchair just for the sounds of crickets? What folded fears into our night? Is this old man discomforted by the war and grenades bursts that have characterized the Nigerian night?
Did you have a particular personal story with HAIKU?
Yes, a friend introduced me to a young Nigerian organizing Haiku programs for interested youths in an open field in a school in UPE Borikiri porthacout. I went, sat in a plastic chair and got captivated by the candour and wit of a very young boy passionately expounding a very cranky poetry form sweetly describing how it stormed the world from Japan, mentioning a Basho..and a Adgeyi Baah Afriku, mamba journal, Heron and many other things. I decided to go close to him. I met in the school where he often teaches Literature and it had been a nice friendship. He softly rejected my first batch of Haiku, calling them shallow and passionless. I became perfect as I continued to join his programs. At a point we started talking in Haiku. haha. Shegun, your boy de loyal.
What do you feel towards the shortlist in general?
The shortlist is what I expected. A squadron of terrific Kus. Highbrow Haijins. And nothing is so encouraging to see me in the shortlist With the hot-headed Obaji-Nwali Shegun having promised to drop his tongue for me to cut if we did not make the shortlist. He so much believe in our haikus. The shortlist spill fires.
What motivation do poets need , to keep writing , in this ridiculously competitive world that vies for their attentions
Poetry is a large river many fits deep. Getting to the riverbed to exum something worthwhile you will have to do what Obaji-Nwali Shegun has been advising us to do “read and read more and more poems intil they lure you to sleep” so read a lot and you will compete favourably.
If 2017 submission was food, what would it be?
If my submission should be food it would be Afang soup with endless esam or periwinkle.
We at Babishai, congratulate her again. The winners will be announced at the #Babishai2017 Poetry Festival dinner on Sunday 6 August at Humura Resort, Kitante Close. Cards are on sale at 40,000/- Call +256 703147862. The full festival programme is here.
The full winning haikus are here: