Thursday, December 25, 2008

Happy Holidays!

Merry Christmas 2 all Lanten Meet Poets!!!
Drink, Eat, Visit your loved ones and slaughter a cow or what ever you do during this time of the year!


Friday, December 12, 2008

My definition of artistic identity

They say a man can have several faces
From several traces, of various influences,
That make his identity of relevance
To who he is, to who he aspires to be.
Although we all have different sides,
Assume different faces when in different places,
These sides end up entwined
Into one individual mind.
A unique entity
With endless possibility
Of creative capability
Such as these words of poetry, that surge within you and me
Making us who we be
Branches of the same tree
The definition of artistic identity

copyright 2008 Elizabeth 'Eizzy.k' Kamugisha

At last Poetry finds a new haven

"Poetry is dead!" was the song my friend Paul sang in my ear when I dragged him to the National Theatre last August to watch a mutual friend of ours perform poetry live on stage. To be fairly honest, I agreed with him 200%. Back in my in my High School days, poetry wasn't exactly my cake of posho in literature class but I had a friend who was going up on stage to make a fool of herself and I could not pass up this opportunity to collect dissing material so on I went with an archaeologist's grin but BOY WAS I SHOCKED! Now normally I tend go overboard with descriptions when my cerebral cortex has been shocked into such awe that I'm robbed of my ability to form intelligible thought so here goes my attempt to shape off their spell. For starters these guys so broke every rule of being African that I am in doubt serious of their skin; FIRST, they started before time! Impressive heh, wait for this one…. They had a full house even before begun; Paul and I there on time and we floated seats! Okay so it was free but this is poetry we're talking about, how many Ugandans even know what that means. Any how the show begun, and my friend was second on stage. The mood started a bit shaky because there was too much light and the poems were short so just as the crowd begun to get it, pooff' the performer was off…..and then out of no where, like a boulder bay's crib, the mood changed. It was only then that I realised that the poems had been arranged carefully to carrot the audience into a trance and before they could realise where they were, it was all over- the shortest three hours of my life. Everything was so effortlessly prepared as if they did this for tea yet I new for a fact that they had been running around like headless chicken for three weeks without a clue of what they were doing. Like I said before I don't really like poetry so when I saw it impeccably dramatised on stage I had to check out these guys for myself. Apparently they call themselves THE LANTERN MEET OF POETS, full of themselves, right? That's exactly what I had in mind when I went to the National Theatre to see what they do. As it would happen, they meet every other Sunday to discuss their poetry. Nothing magical there until you sit in on one of them as I did last Sunday. I was going to meet poets so armed with my dictionary of poetic language I went determined not be ambushed, expecting to hear them hurl at each other words like anapaest and onomatopoeia (I had done my research) but first shocker here, everything was kept simple it was a conversation at a tea party The flow of discussion was very open and genuine though sometimes harsh but what struck me the most was the quality of poetry that was presented. These guys are not joking, they are good! I am not a writer but I was so inspired by these guys that I literally run to my keyboard and started hammering away and till I had this my first blog article and two poems. Talk about dominoes, they are that good. Is poetry dead? Maybe it once was for a while but in these Lantern Meet of Poet guys, it was resurrected. They are fresh and original but most importantly, when you are around them you can't help but feel the passion they have for poetry. To make it worse a lot of them had no Literature background. On the day I was there, there was a lecturer of pharmacy, two architects, a dentist, lawyers, psychologists and I could only guess what the others were doing I mostly appreciated the reference to poetry the basic yet highest form of artistic expression and when one the guys announced at the end that they were preparing an anthology, I almost jumped out my seat. These guys are the real deal. They put life into poetry. If what I heard is only a glimpse of what they can do, I am literally on my toes in wait……

Mathias Luswatta