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An Evening of Poetry from the Horn of Africa

March 1, 2012

Mark your calendars! This coming Tuesday evening, March 6, Warscapes–the new independent online magazine–will be hosting an evening of poetry from the Somalia, Eritrea, and Ethiopia at Alwan for the Arts beginning at 7:00pm.

Non-stop civil war in Somalia. The continuing madness of war talk between Ethiopia and Eritrea. Sudan split in two. Similarly regular warnings of famine. An ominously expanding United States military presence. Is it all just one big “collision of altars” and their gods, as Ethiopian poet Tsegaye Gabre-Medhin once asserted? Can we only see the faces and hear the voices of the Horn through the barrel of a gun?  Eritrean author Zemhret Yohannes claims otherwise! “These poets write a lot about the field and about war. And yet war isn’t only about fighting. And it’s not all about death. That’s too restrictive. They write about friendship and the perennial issues of love and life. War has that, too.” Somali poet Ali Jimale Ahmed explains, “And while in the Horn of Africa catastrophes may abound, the calamity that besets this region can equally be explained through its antiphony: the perseverance and cosmic, albeit cautious, optimism of its people. A horn, after all, is also a way of making music.”

Join Ali Jimale Ahmed, Charles Catalupo, and Solomon Deressa as they read selections of their exciting and beautiful work. Maaza Mengiste, author of the critically acclaimed Beneath the Lion’s Gaze, will MC this very special event. Tickets are five duckets a piece but students, seniors and members of Alwan get in free. Come on out!

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