Monday, March 9, 2009

African myth...come home!

We Have Come Home

We have come home
From the bloodless wars
With sunken hearts
Our booths full of pride-
From the true massacre of the soul
When we have asked
‘What does it cost
To be loved and left alone’

We have come home
Bringing the pledge
Which is written in rainbow colours
Across the sky-for burial
But is not the time
To lay wreaths
For yesterday’s crimes,
Night threatens
Time dissolves
And there is no acquaintance
With tomorrow

The gurgling drums
Echo the stars
The forest howls
And between the trees
The dark sun appears.

We have come home
When the dawn falters
Singing songs of other lands
The death march
Violating our ears
Knowing all our loves and tears
Determined by the spinning coin

We have come home
To the green foothills
To drink from the cup
Of warm and mellow birdsong
‘To the hot beaches
Where the boats go out to sea
Threshing the ocean’s harvest
And the hovering, plunging
Gliding gulls shower kisses on the waves

We have come home
Where through the lighting flash
And the thundering rain
The famine the drought,
The sudden spirit
Lingers on the road
Supporting the tortured remnants of the flesh
That spirit which asks no favour of the world
But to have dignity.To be loved and left alone’


Dr Lenrie Peters was born in 1932 in Banjul (The Gambia). In 1956 he graduated with a BSc. from the TRINITY College of Cambridge. From 1956 to 1959, he worked with the University College Hospital of London. In 1959, he received a Medical and Surgery diploma from Cambridge. He holds a Master’s degree in Arts.
From 1954 to1955 he was the president of African Students’ Society of Cambridge. He worked as journalist of African programs with the BBC from 1955 to 1968. He was the president of the Historic Commission of Monuments of the Gambia and President of FESTAC comity in 1977.
Mr Peters was the President of the board of directors of the National library of the Gambia and Gambia College from 1979 to 1987. From 1985 to 1991, he was a member and President of the West African Examination Council (WAEC). He was member of the jury for the Literary prize of the Commonwealth in 1995.
Posted by Cherno Omar Barry at 6:48 AM

His first novel, The Second Round was published in 1965 by the publishers Heinemann. It is 193 pages long and the story is preceded by a poem on Freetown.The novel is about a young physician, Dr Kawa, who settles down in Freetown at the morrow of independence after completing his studies in England. He falls in love with a young girl only to discover how unfaithful she is. He is seduced by the wife of his neighbour. His passionate love affairs ends up in dismal failure. Dr Kawa is so traumatised that his sentimental life is plagued by disorder. In an attempt to escape from this situation he moves to the country side. The whole story intends to show how complex a society can be. Dr Kawa, someone who sees life to be simple, or too simple, sees himself involved in the complex problems of other people which will eventually affect his own.
Posted by Cherno Omar Barry at 6:47 AM

Posted by Hello
Posted by Cherno Omar Barry at 6:46 AM

In 1967, Dr Peters published Satellites, a collection of 55 poems where intimate emotion is combined with a deep meditation on human dignity and justice.
Posted by Cherno Omar Barry at 6:44 AM

Posted by Hello
Posted by Cherno Omar Barry at 6:43 AM

What magic spells

held the first men,

wandering in darkness

heads bowed to draw

breath, refuge from toil

and say

this is our home


Four years later, in 1971 Katchikali, another collection of 69 poems was published. Katchikali is a sacred crocodile pool in Bakau, in the Greater Banjul Area. It is also the title of one of the poems (n°56).
Posted by Cherno Omar Barry at 6:42 AM
Selected Poetry

Posted by Hello
Posted by Cherno Omar Barry at 6:42 AM
Selected Poetry

In 1981 he published his Selected Poetry. This collection is very much similar to a personal anthology. It is composed of 104 poems: 28 extracted from Satellites, 28 from Katchikali and 48 new poems. This work is the fruit of 14 years of poetic creativity.
Posted by Cherno Omar Barry at 6:23 AM
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Dr Lenrie PetersPosted by Hello
Dr Lenrie Peters
PensivePosted by Hello
The Second RoundPosted by Hello
The Second Round
SatellitesPosted by Hello
KatchikaliPosted by Hello
Selected PoetryPosted by Hello
Selected Poetry
Links on Dr Lenrie Peters
Lenrie Peters - Profile
Home Coming
Poets of Gambian Origin
Dreams of Katchikali
RIZAL-Lenrie Peters - Profile
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Cherno Omar Barry
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