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Five Hundred Nigerian Poets

By Aboki Associates

Summary

I decided to collect poems for this anthology because of
two reasons. The first was the fact that poetry is often
the most written of the three genres. This is
understandably so: the emotive efficacy of poetry argues
its especial patronage by writers particularly in a very
emotionally stressful nation like Nigeria. Unfortunately,
publishing outlets are very hard to come by. This was
my second reason for embarking on this project. I felt it
would provide a publishing opportunity for the many
poems written in Nigeria.
Five Hundred Nigerian Poets
 
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Abstract

I decided to collect poems for this anthology because of
two reasons. The first was the fact that poetry is often
the most written of the three genres. This is
understandably so: the emotive efficacy of poetry argues
its especial patronage by writers particularly in a very
emotionally stressful nation like Nigeria. Unfortunately,
publishing outlets are very hard to come by. This was
my second reason for embarking on this project. I felt it
would provide a publishing opportunity for the many
poems written in Nigeria.
Deliberately, I refused to title this anthology Five
Hundred New Nigerian Poets as understandably done by
others who made efforts at collecting African or Nigerian
poetry in recent times. That refusal notwithstanding it is
needless to point out here that most of the poets in this
anthology are among the newest voices in the country.
Indeed, almost every poem included here is written
by people who have something new about them. For
instance I was reading Professor Akachi Adimorah-
Ezeigbo’s poems for the first time though I have long
known her reputation as a novelist. The same goes for
Professor A.N. Akwanya whose scholarly fame is known
by many people – except his poetry. Some of the poets
found here are those who are known only in name. In
other words, they are known as poets but their works
have been hardly read by majority of Nigerian critics
because of the publishing situation in Nigeria. In this
category I hazard to name writers like Moses Tsenongu,
B.M. Dzukogu, Mercy Ugot and others too numerous to
mention. Also found here are writers who have been
secret poets all along. A look at their artistry demonstrates
that they are not newcomers to the trade but I have
personally not heard much about them. Professor I.N.
Itodo, Ahmed Umar, Olu Oyewale, Sola Owonibi, Nana
Aishatu, Akatu Ajonye, Ahile Agbanyi etc are but a few
examples. Indeed this anthology has availed me the
opportunity to meet new poets and new poems. I hope it
will be of some value to other readers.
In a collection of this volume, it is not possible to
attempt any artistic appreciation of diverse talents. I will
therefore make no effort to comment on the literary
potentials of the poems here. My job is to set the table. I
have set the table. I can only assure every guest that every
poet included in this anthology is a poet to watch.

About the Author

Aboki Associates

Aboki Associates

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