In these thirteen chapters of verse, titled The Girl of Red Beauty, Alfred Nyagaka Nyamwange captures voices of the people of Gusii, AbaGusii, through their songs, proverbs, and play games. The voices pronounce AbaGusii philosophies, fears, moods, and tempo as they work and traverse the hills and the valleys that constitute the Gusii Highlands. The element of poetry here emanates from the beliefs, norms, proverbs, sayings, wisdom, songs, stories, and the environment, all of which combine to produce a presence of living souls. The personas fully manifest in an active environment, whereby, at every strum of the lyre and roll of the drum, the verse comes alive. Welcome, sing, and dance along.
What Others Say
Nyamwange writes in the trend of African oral tradition with his poetry using local imagery and idioms, and of simple and direct language. “It affirms valuable continuity with pre-colonial African culture synthesized with other cultures to create something unique.” – Dr. Chris Okemwa, Author, Poet, and Lecturer in Literary Studies.
“The uniqueness of the anthology of this poetry lies in the thorough depiction of the culture of AbaGusii from different facets such as marriage, circumcision, religion, and environment through poetry. The work resembles great poetry such as Song of Lawino and Song of Ocol.” – Dr. Andrew Nyongesa, Editor, and Literary Scholar.