Hello Ladies and Gents,

We met again this Tuesday at Soma Book Cafe in Dar es Salaam.
Six of us were present, namely Paulina, Caroline, Demere, Tendai, Jasper and Bandele.

You’d think we’d leave early but we made till 10pm. The theme for this session was ‘Sexism’. We were pleased to also receive poems via email from members who couldn’t make it namely. Victoria-‘Defense for the defendant’; Lola- It is so sad and Olajumoke-‘Why I’m tired of being your object pool’.

It’s for these members that we’ll give a bit of a detailed report on what happened in the session.

As usual we got to hear the poems first and reviewed them later. The first up was ‘Why I’m tired of being your object pool’ by Olajumoke read by Tendai.

It was received with much pensive thought, Demere ‘She’s angry..Poor guy (said somewhat sarcastically).’ It was noted that the poem touched on various female abuse aspects. The poem was stark but in places it had layers “…The royal throne of the stronger sex, As a king oppressing the Queen of sense…” Jasper thought it was really good.

The next poem was Victoria’s-‘Defense for the defendant’- without even having to mention the side note that the author gave in her email. Already the audience understood that the persona in the poem was being sarcastic.
Tendai-‘ I like the part where she touches on ‘Youth is the calling card’ this captures well the ludicrous license that some males have in practicing male chauvinism.’ Carol-‘No matter how evolved we now are in this matter. It’s for sure females have been oppressed and in return we’ve been made wiser in dealing with our sexual urges. As when you picture this rape charge against a female and she is busy in court saying ‘I just couldn’t resist the breadth of those shoulders….they were simply calling me.’ (Immediately everyone laughed and the two dear males particularly Jasper, cringed.) You see the clear subjugation females have been placed with.

We then heard ‘Court Session’ quite ideal from hearing a ‘Defense for the defendant’. Right away the audience had to contain their laughter.
It was hard to imagine sincere Jasper as a sexist, still the poem captured the male defense point of view very well. ‘I concur with this view except for maybe one line’-Demere; Carol-‘Congrats this is different from your usual poems, it was humorous but also it explained one scene as it was happening quite well too..” ‘

We then heard ‘It is so sad’ by Lola, the poem gave way to a lengthy discussion. Which had core points like: female objectification’ has to be averted by both the male and female. That ‘sexism’ like ‘racisim’ is a disease that affects the victim and perpetrator. And there was a small debate on how the female is most to make the change. Ultimately it was concluded that the situation is yet to be remedied but it’s for sure that both parties have to take steps to alter their behavior and mindset towards this absurd philosophy of inequalities.

Perhaps it was opportune to then hear the poem ‘Moon & Sun’ by Tendai, which gave a middle ground for the battle of the sexes. Received amorously comments were. ‘That is post feminism’-Demere; ‘That brings me back to how it should be, the spirit of how it was traditionally in Africa many centuries back…’; ‘Your angel must have delivered that right to you given you wrote it within this session…it’s beautiful’.

Out of theme we heard a poem ‘Huuu huu’ by Carol. This was received with deep breaths of inhale and exhale…’It makes me think of unity’-Bandele

As a last poem we also heard ‘On being ready’ by Demere. A poem she said she wrote, when she was angry after one of our Presidents remarked twice that 30years is too long a charge for Rape especially if its rape of an adult. Both Jasper and Bandele mentioned they were glad they were close to the door..;)

Well ladies and gents that was UWAKE on the 23rd of July, karibuni sana kwenye mkutano wetu mwingine tarehe 6th Agosti….Mada ni ‘The hand that feeds you’ au ‘Mkono unao kulisha’.

Kind Rgds

Coordinator Caroline

P.S. If you have recited a poem in UWAKE and haven’t handed it as written word via this email. Please do so for our archive purposes…

P.S.S… no pictures take… agreed we start to poetry slams once every two months at Soma Book Cafe in collaboration with Caribbean Kitchens beginning from end of August… get prepared, join the club!