Contemporary South African poet Koleka Putuma lovingly recounts memories of happiness and childhood innocence in her poem Black Joy, published in the Sol Plaatje European Union Poetry Anthology (Vol.6) in 2017. The refreshing text makes a point to change the narrative of an African childhood, which is too often associated with pain, struggle and suffering as Putuma focuses on describing a time of peace, playfulness and family. “Isn’t it funny? / that when they ask about black childhood / all they are interested in is our pain / as if the joy-parts were accidental,” she writes. There is a common tendency to erase positivity when discussing the black experience, particularly in Africa. This poem acts as a symbol of all the good that simply never makes the literary cut. Artists & Reviews 

7 Poems That Perfectly Depict The Beauty Of The Black Experience

BY SAGAL MOHAMMED From literary giants such as Audre Lorde to emerging Sudanese-American poet Dalia Elhassan, we travel the diaspora to discover poetry that shows the strength, resilience and poise of the black experience. Beauty, resilience, pain and identity are just a few common themes used to articulate the black experience in literature. For centuries, poetry has acted as an artistic release for the black community to express our authentic take on the world. Felicitously put by American writer Audre Lorde, “Poetry is the way we help give name to the…

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“2. Interview: “Dr. Patricia Wesley & Comrade Cherbo Geeplay”. Liberian Listener. August 14, 2019 https://www.liberianlistener.com/2019/08/14/interview-dr-patricia-wesley-comrade-cherbo-geeplay/ “3 Wen Wryte, “Dismantling the cancel culture.” American Thinker. July 6, 2020. https://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2020/07/dismantling_the_cancel_culture.html “4. Trudier Harris, “African American Protest Poetry.” National Humanistic Center, 1917 http://nationalhumanitiescenter.org/tserve/freedom/1917beyond/essays/aaprotestpoetry.html Artists & Reviews 

Cherbo Geeplay: Understanding his poetry and politics

By Dag Walker Thirteen years of civil conflict nearly destroyed the small West African nation of Liberia in the late 20th century. The period of reconstruction that followed in 2003 has surprisingly resulted in an explosion of local literature, some of it world-class in quality. A nation destroyed by war has suddenly produced writers of world-renown and hope for its literature lies on the horizon. “Usually wars or crises provide a new germination, if you will, like a forest that burns down and where new vegetation sprouts,” notes Liberian poet,…

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Overall Performance: Consider whether the participant’s physical presence, voice and articulation, dramatic appropriateness, and evidence of understanding all seem on target and unified to breathe life into the poem. “Overall performance” is worth more than other categories, with the value up to nine points. This category evaluates the total success of the performance, the degree to which the recitation has become more than the sum of its parts. Society Arts & Leisure 

International Women’s Day Poetry Competition

    Program Overview: The Liberian Poet Society in collaboration with support from the Embassy of Sweden in Liberia, requests the general public to freely participate in a poetry competition in celebration of International Women’s Day. The competition encourages a dynamic culture of creativity and recitation competition of writers/poets across the country. This mini event shall help writers/poets enhance their writing techniques, master their public speaking skills, and build their self-confidence. Prizes • 1st Winner – USD $ 250.00 • 2nd Winner – USD $ 200.00 • 3rd Winner –…

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http://www.literaryorphans.org/playdb/two-poems-patricia-jabbeh-wesley/?fbclid=IwAR0byNvX4cElB_Ya3Uu0zpv5SfTMf6RfVA5RI2FXJtkBQtgFgCvp0vS3f44 Artists & Reviews 

Literary Orphan Published These Two Poems By Patricia Jabbeh Wesley

Poet Patricia Jabbeh Wesley was born in Monrovia, Liberia, and raised there and in her father’s home village of Tugbakeh, where she learned to speak Grebo in addition to English, the national language. In 1991, Wesley immigrated with her family to southern Michigan to escape the Liberian civil war. She earned a BA at the University of Liberia, an MS at Indiana University, and a PhD at Western Michigan University. Vulnerable in their combination of grief and levity, Wesley’s poems deal with family, community, and war. “What I try to…

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Born in Antigua, West Indies, Althea Romeo-Mark is an educator and writer who grew up in St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands. She has lived and taught in St. Thomas, Virgin Islands, USA, Liberia (1976-1990), London, England (1990-1991), and in Switzerland since 1991. She earned a B.A. in English and Secondary Education from the University of the Virgin Islands and an M.A. in Modern American Literature from Kent State University, U.S.A. She also has a Cambridge Certificate in Teaching English as a Foreign Language (CETEFLA). Artists & Reviews 

Former UL Prof Romeo Mark’s poems are published in Beyond the Long Lines

  Born in Antigua, West Indies, Althea Romeo-Mark is an educator and writer who grew up in St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands. She has lived and taught in St. Thomas, Virgin Islands, USA, Liberia (1976-1990), London, England (1990-1991), and in Switzerland since 1991. She earned a B.A. in English and Secondary Education from the University of the Virgin Islands and an M.A. in Modern American Literature from Kent State University, U.S.A. She also has a Cambridge Certificate in Teaching English as a Foreign Language (CETEFLA). She considers herself a citizen…

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Romeo's first volume of poetry, The Silent Dancing Spirit was published in 1974. She taught for a year at Kent State in the Department of Pan-African Studies, but then decided to move to Africa and began working as an assistant English professor at the University of Liberia. In 1977, she married and continued teaching and writing, publishing three additional volumes of poetry: Palaver: West Indian Poems in 1978, Two Faces, Two Phases in 1984, and Beyond Dream: The Ritual Dancer in 1989. In 1984, Romeo-Mark, along with C. William Allen, Keith Neville Asumuyaya Best, Henry Gensang, Thomas Johnson and Ruth Wuor founded the Liberian Association of Writers (LAW). Artists & Reviews 

Two Poems: Crossing Frontiers and Crossing the Road

    Romeo’s first volume of poetry, The Silent Dancing Spirit was published in 1974.  She taught for a year at Kent State in the Department of Pan-African Studies, but then decided to move to Africa and began working as an assistant English professor at the University of Liberia. In 1977, she married and continued teaching and writing, publishing three additional volumes of poetry: Palaver: West Indian Poems in 1978, Two Faces, Two Phases in 1984, and Beyond Dream: The Ritual Dancer in 1989. In 1984, Romeo-Mark, along with C.…

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Africa: prestigious Brunel Poetry Prize name shortlists candidates tomorrow

The 2017 international Brunel poetry prize shortlists will be announced tomorrow March 6th 2017. The Brunel prize for poetry is the African poetry prize that spots new talents every year on the African continent and the diaspora, and is composed of several eminent luminary poets drawn from across the globe. According to the site “The winner,” will be “announced  on May 2nd 2017. The Brunel International African Poetry Prize is a major annual poetry prize of £3000 aimed at the development, celebration and promotion of poetry from Africa. Now in its fourth year, this year the Prize is sponsored by Brunel…

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