Book review: From a sniper’s perspective

Book review: From a sniper’s perspective

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I know I have pretty much earned the label of “The queen of AWOL” and as much as I would like to say that I am back blogging full time, I can’t say that at this point in time. Every year comes with its curve ball and this year has dealt more than a couple sucker punches, but that is a blog post for another day. Today, I want to celebrate a poetry book I read last week, it’s titled “From a sniper’s perspective“.


Let’s start with the things I loved:
The foreword, This book has the most interesting foreword of any poetry book I’ve read so far. It contains a brief review of the entire collection in a few paragraphs, short enough to keep the reader craving more of the poems and long enough, to give the reader an idea of what to expect from the collection and the poet as a whole.

The poems except for a few were micro poems, but trust me, they aren’t the micro poems you are expecting. They are filled with metaphors, alliteration, imagery and other aspects of English grammar than one wouldn’t expect from an insta-image sized poem. It is a contemporary book of poetry for the modern poet- Short enough for the modern poet and complex enough for the contemporary reader

The collection begins with life as a Nigerian in poems like “Nigeria as a hundred Naifather note” and “transformed don blow“. Then moves on to other aspects. He talks about how society now is kind of like the “Bishop” in chess game, everyone just moves in and out and no one looks out for one another. This poem is called “persistence of vision“.

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He also talks deeply about love in this collection, which came as a surprise to me because from my brief interaction with the author, I didn’t think he was such a romantic, which his poems reveal him to be. Will post some of my favorites below:

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But of course, unless you are Harper lee and the book is “to kill a mockingbird”, no book is 100% for me. With that being said, A few of the poems in the book especially the prose got a bit complicated for me to grasp the entire picture. I also wish it had a content page, which would make it easier to access the poems I love and of course, it’s a short collection of poetry, so I hope there’s going to be a “from the sniper’s perspective 2.0” in the near future.

That being said, I would give the book a 4/5. It reminds me of Sylvia Plath meets Billy Collins because of it’s metaphor and wit filled poems. Don’t forget to stop by on the author’s instapage (@the_anonymous_cherif) and say hello. Also, He blogs at The anonymous Cherif blog

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Walking away…

Walking away…

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And he said, “I am fond of you”, just that.
Not “I love you”, or “I like you”, He just felt a fondness for me. Something to say he enjoyed being in my company but, He wouldn’t take it any further.
For a while, it was enough for me. I couldn’t get the entire cake, so I settled for that little slice, enough to leave a sweet taste in my mouth for a while.

But as all things come crashing down eventually, my fantasy did. I realized when you love someone, “fondness” just couldn’t cut it. There’s a little bitterness that begins to form in the throat when you tell someone “I love you”, and they smile and utter, “I’m fond of you too”.

The bitterness spread in my mouth and I knew I had to make a choice. It was either him or me. If I choose him, I lose myself. So before my heart could convince me to do otherwise, I ran. Not literally. In the span of a few moments, I deleted his contacts, his pictures, his physicalities, leaving only his memories. His memories… Science had taught me a time will come when they will begin to fade too.

Sometimes, you have to love yourself enough to walk away from things and people who put a dent around your heart.

Without you-

Without you-

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I’ve always wondered
What it would feel like
If one day we awaken and
The sun refused to shine.
If the tree leaves stood ramrod
Without the rhythm of the winds.
If the birds remained in their niches,
And the sky stood empty.

What would it feel like
If all the coffee shops lacked coffee,
(Decaf does not count),
If papers wouldn’t take up poetry,
If silence was the new “pollution”.
And noise became (what’s noise?)

Then you left.
Although,
The coffee shops are still stocked
And of course the sun arose.
The tree leaves are dancing,
And the birds going to and fro.
Today.. I know how it feels.


Last month was my blogiversary, and I asked you all to ask any questions you want to be answered. For this month, I’d be posting my blog posts with an answer to a question, so keep an eye out for that.

Question 2 (Jodi) She asks “where does your inspiration for your writing comes from. It is often sad and deep and I worry it is about you.”

Most of the time, I get my inspiration from life. I am not an abstract person, so abstract art and still life art are not my forte. I cant look at an empty cup and easily gain inspiration from that. My inspiration comes from people. 

I am a very inquisitive person, I love to understand people, why they feel the way the do, why they react certain ways. And if i don’t have answers to that, I find that poetry gives me the freedom to create that. It helps me fill in the remaining pictures of a puzzle. And also, the amount tragedy and sadness floating around becomes too much for me to contain at times, and so writing becomes a way of unburdening.
I hope that answers the question.

My Truth (about depression)

My Truth (about depression)

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Depression
Is not just a phase
Like the girl who outgrows
Enacting plays with dolls,
Or pretending the mirror
Is her applauding audience.

Depression
Is not just sadness
It is screaming and anger
And irritability-
Being a short ended fuse.
It is rudeness and numbness
And night vigil,
To make it go away.

Depression’s antidote
Is not love.
It doesn’t magically evaporate
By the presence of someone
Whose world revolves around
You.
Love makes it better,
Love is no cure.

Depression is not glamorous.
It is pure hell,
It is a mean friend.

Last month was my blogiversary, and I asked you all to ask any questions you want to be answered. For this month, I’d be posting my blog posts with an answer to a question, so keep an eye out for that.
Question 1 (Colin and Ray). He asked: What was the most impactful event (what has influenced you the most) in your life to date?

I had to think a lot about this because there’s been quite a few events, but, I ended up choosing one. And this is because, this particular event was what started a spiral for me and that event is “leaving home and going to another country (Sudan) at the age of 15 to start university.
The main reason I chose this is because, I know now, that if everything that occurred with me whilst I was in Sudan, had happened back at home, the end results would have been completely different. So moving to Sudan at that particular age and time, made all the difference.
Thank you very much For the question Colin.

At the end (of the day)

At the end (of the day)

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I believe in coffee
And the effect of
witnessing the majestic
Welcome of the sun.

I believe in storms
And the rush to take cover
From Nature’s anger
Or blessing,
Depending on who you ask.

I believe that the past
Harbours many mistakes
But few regrets.

I believe that to love
Is to accept wholeheartedly
The good, the yucky,
The perfections, the flaws.

I believe that trust
should be freely given,
Suspicion earned,
And once broken,
Trust’s frayed edges can
Rarely be mended.

I believe in prayers,
And a God far superior
Than anything, anyone.

I believe in freedom,
Free will, free choice.

I believe
When the blinds are pulled,
The spotlight off,
I need to be able to look
In the mirror,
And vouch for the choices
I make everyday…
I hope I can.

Rejection-

Rejection-

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The rejections pile up,
First The boy,
Then the emails
And now rejections, in the form
Of sealed papers,
Arrive at my doorstep.
Like I need,
A physical reminder to
“I don’t want- you, yours”.

“It’s not you, it’s me”
He said.
“Your work is great, just
Not for us”
They said.
Neither of them having
The courtesy,
The guts,
To speak the truth we both know:
“The problem is with me”.

But that’s fine.
Really, that’s okay.
I’ve done the calculation:
6 months of rejected writing,
Requires 1 week of grieving.
5 rejections,
ergo 5 weeks.
Then its back to pen and paper.

The world has told me
Too many Nos,
It has rejected me,
Too many times,
For me to reject myself.
Me myself and I,
We gon’ keep at it,
We gon’ be alright.

Call me Beautiful-

Call me Beautiful-

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Some like ‘em skinny.
Some like ‘em thickum.
But until you find it within yourself to love you as you are,

You’re going to spend the rest of your life holding on to friendships which should long have been allowed to wither away, simply because they find you “beautiful”.
You are going to spend the rest of your life  crawling through moments, searching, chasing, someone to call you beautiful.

And until you learn to love yourself, “beautiful” to you would always, always mean something that is skin deep.
But my dear… Beautiful is so much more than that. Beautiful is not skin deep, it is soul deep.

Begin Again-

Begin Again-

 

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At the back of my mind, I always knew that, It, this, could come to an end.

I could die,
He could die,
He could leave…
And I know this might seem a morbid thought to many. But, there has always been a spot of realism amidst my fairytale romanticism filled life.

I try to keep a little spot, save a little grey in my rainbow, in order to remind myself about the reality of life.

I refuse to live in a world filled with illusions and the delusion that endings is not a possibility.

I want to be able to say: I am okay and I am fine with endings now because I know I can always begin again.

Silver Linings-

Silver Linings-

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She wants to read about
romance, in an atmosphere
of scented roses. How to get the one
your eyes are set at; the heart’s
flutterings at the sound of a voice;
The thought of a face.

I want to write of sadness
and grief; the atmosphere of
grey clouds on a summer day. How
the mind works from the fateful day,
when the fruit of one’s womb,
Departs from earth.

I want to write about silver
linings after a stormy weather.
The ways of grief, and society’s
Alloted time stamp.
How a mind overwhelmed by
darkness, can survive another
sunrise and sunset.
I want to write about hope.

Teach your sons-

Teach your sons-

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Teach your sons
To lower their gaze,
Teach your sons
To control their anger, 

The conversation
Has long been about females,
Teach your sons,
To value the girl-child.

Teach your sons,
Dressing is not an invite,
Teach your sons,
Catcalling’s not complimentary. 

For generations gone by,
Females have borne the burden,
Teach your sons,
A woman is not an “asset”. 

Teach your sons,
They’re humans not animals,
Fit to control emotions,
And not slaves to their hormones.

Teach your sons,
Respect is due to all lives.