“A nation turning into a mortuary” as an “experiment in human suffering”. This is an example of how powerful Richard Otwao’s poetry is: using deceptively simple diction and imagery, he vividly captures the tragedy that African countries have suffered in different situations of war, dictatorship, deprivation, disease, and insult, to mention but a few. With delicate irony and humour, he shows us that not all is lost, for if we mediate upon our deeds and will ourselves into loving our fellow human beings a little more, we can salvage something from the mess we have put our countries, and ourselves, into.”
-Dr Danson Sylvester Kahyana, Senior Lecturer in Literature, Makerere University
“This is our country
If you seek the truth,
You are chasing wind.
The wounded are the culprits,
The aggressor is the victim.
The dead are peripatetic,
The living are the dead.
The press becomes the chief rumour mill,
They are the agitators.
The regime of the day,
Props up the opposition.
The passionately disgruntled opposition,
Promotes the regime in power.
The voters become autocratic,
They oppress their leaders.
Children violate their parents’ rights,
Women rape men in broad daylight.”
RICHARD OTWAO was born in Amuria in December 1971 and went to Angorom and Soroti Demonstrations schools for his primary education. He later joined Amuria SS in 1986 and when the insurgency that rocked the Eastern part of the country set in, he enrolled in Teso College Aloet to complete his secondary education. Preferring a teaching career, he enrolled in NTC Kaliro for his DSE (Dip in Secondary Education 1993-1995), Kyambogo University for BED (2001-2005) and later Masters of Arts (MA) in Literature in the same University. Richard has taught English Language and Literature in English since 1996 in various schools. He is currently teaching in Mt St Mary’s College Namagunga.
Format: Paperbakc & Kindle
Number Of Pages: 100
Publisher: Kitara Nation
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“I think of Rusho’s LIGHT as an act of taking the veil off the world; of the man he is, and that of the people around him. I am deliberate about calling it an act because it’s memory in motion. Each poem dances below a bulb at its own tempo and intent. Some of them seek it, the spot, while others avoid it so that the pains and injustices in their bodies aren’t seen. But a lot is on display still, even during moments of darkness. Questions about gender and the human body, loss, relationships, the country, self, and so on. I admire the bravery by which he writes about himself. What drives a man to speak about himself with such honesty? The only way to find out is by diving into the poems he presents as a mirror.
-Lule ssebo Lule, author of OGENDA WA?
“The young writers have vehemently demonstrated their frustrations, puzzles and hopes in a society with adults swallowed in know-it-all snobbery. The poetic arrows in this poetry collection declare war on societal silence on things that matter most and draw lines to proper order of the ideal society, a society in which they would love to dwell now as children and tomorrow as adults. It is a reflective collection of thoughts with thousands of options of solutions to our fears. It is work you wouldn’t abandon to dust.”
-Kened. B. Ngiise iii, teacher, poet/writer.
“This anthology also highlights important conversations that need to be had; rape, defilement, female oppression, global warming, politics, discrimination among others. We hear a generation that is worried for the state of our nation, and for the generations to come. You will feel the anger, sadness and mixed emotions through lyrical puns and some of the vividly descriptive pieces, and you will never get enough. I especially loved the ‘Ungodly Hour’ for its ability to speak on these important matters unbiased and while making great stories and songs from some equally tragic experiences.”
-Aanyu O. Deborah, Former President, Writers’ Club, Mt. St. Mary’s College, Namagunga.