Fiction

Elisha Oluyemi: The Dust Can Intoxicate

The dead no longer roam in our tales; they have all seized our pens and papers; now they are writing themselves to life. living, dead, all have stories to tell. —Anonymous STORIES HAVE ENDINGS—UNLESS they aren’t stories. Unless they are never meant to be told. They are like dead men. Women. Children. Once death is come, the end is come. Unless death never really came. After a long, vain...

Ify Tony-Monye: Perturbation

She is standing at the balcony on a cool, beautiful afternoon, her eyes gazing at the scenery before her as she muses. The blame is mine, she thinks at first, then quickly overrules that thought as someone, somewhere, is the catalyst of her misfortune. The blame, therefore, lies elsewhere. Her grandfather’s favourite saying comes to mind – “He who swallows a complete coconut has absolute...

Paul O. Anozie: Age is a Factor

It was like a break dance with the dead, the day I celebrated mass at St Steven’s Cemetery.  All Souls’ Day, Tuesday second November 2002. The choir sang an old Igbo song about the Holy Mass being a super communion between angels, the living, and the dead; very fitting for the occasion. When the priest lifted the host during consecration, I could see not two hands but ten, or twenty, or thirty...

Marycynthia Chinwe Okafor: Uwa

Long ago, Enu, Ana and Mmiri, three of the first great deities created by the creator Chukwu Okike lived together in Anaoma as the best of friends. But because they quarreled more often than they didn’t, usually shaking the tranquility of Anaoma, Amadioha, the god of Justice banished them to Uwa cursing them to return home only when they outgrew their adversity and learnt to accept each other’s...

Omobola Osamor: I Chose You

Cloaked in water. Bathed in blood. Dark and warm was our shared enclave. Yours was the first heartbeat I felt. I felt each movement, each jerk, each flutter. Before my eyes ever opened, I knew you were mine. When it grew too small, Face to face, a firm hug, I wrapped my limbs around yours. Was that when the promise was made? Yes. The first time. ‘In your arms, I will take my last breath.’...

People

“The artist is a person at a crossroads” – Francis B. Nyamnjoh

Cameroonian Scholar Francis B. Nyamnjoh on Art, Academia, indebtedness, and Borders. In December 2021, Francis B. Nyamnjoh, a professor of social anthropology at the University of Cape Town, South Africa, turned sixty. Nyamnjoh is not merely a brilliant teacher and researcher but he is also a novelist, playwright and publisher. His work has had a profound impact on contemporary intellectual life...

DiaCritique

Abdulrazak Gurnah
DiaCritique

Meeting Abdulrazak Gurnah the First Time

Abdulrazak Gurnah was a name I did not know until recently. Until the Nobel Committee in Norway announced him as this year’s winner of its prize in literature, I had no inkling whatsoever who the man was, nor what he represented or could represent for Africa and the literature that...