Monday, July 25, 2011

Drum-Media discussion with Bhekumusa Moyo

Introducing Bhekumusa Moyo and his literary insights and views:
I grew up reading Chinua Achebe, Wole Soyinka, Athol Fugard, Charlse Mungoshi, Chenjerai Hove and Buchi Emecheta. I fell in love with the way they approached contemporary life issues. Their issues ranged from political. These heroes inspired my writing a big deal. They taught me to be true, relevant and consistent. When I discovered my touch on Protest Poetry, I respected that they had their own approach, I stood by the side of Protest and I am still firm on it. As a performing poet also, there have been blocks on my way because of my work which range from couple of arrests, questioning, censorship etc. I used to write for the Sunday News Poetry Column here in Zimbabwe until when I was requested to stop as my poetry was inciting. Nonetheless, from a few notes I learnt from “I write what I like” by Steve Biko, I said, I would write of what I hate.
Poetry is my first love. The way I write is the way I live and feel things. Each time something worth writing of passes my mind, I just write. I have never spent more than an hour on one poem. It sounds crazy! To me poetry is like my position on a subject. When it strikes it is just like that. I do not stress toning down or making it sophisticated. The literary devices in my poetry just find their way there. I don’t force them on particular lines. I believe simplicity is the greatest sophistication. I want everyone to read my poem once and understand what it speaks of.

There are times when I feel guilty, especially if I am performing. Performing platforms have been a challenge as there are many aspects of “respect” to look at. When there are Ministers for example and I want to tell of dirty water we drink in the locations (high density suburbs). The respect of state information as provided for under silly laws called Access of information and Protection of Privacy Act and Public order Security Act (AIPPA and POSA in Zimbabwe) makes me tone down issues. I feel guilty as I can’t say the insult which I heard the granny who stays next door say. Like, “These Ministers are useless like human waste”. The gap remains in me and eats me up until another presentation.

(This article is posted on Drum Beat Media. The comments following it are:

20 hours ago · · ·

    • Nzube Ifechukwu
      14 hours ago via Facebook Mobile · · 1 personLoading...

      I love everything he said except that '...simplicity is the greatest sophistication...I want everyone to read my poem once and understand what it speaks of.'
      In my humble opinion, a work of art should not render its meaning easily to the rea...der. A writer should write bearing first in mind to meet literary demands. The audience can them come second. But then there are writers who can't be complex and subtle, however hard they try; just like there are those who are carved out to be complex and subtle. I fall in the first group. However, those in the later group are those who write great literature. They 'draw', they don't 'write'.See more

    • Abigail George
      12 hours ago · · 1 personNzube Ifechukwu likes this.

      Silence has kept us (African writers, the extraordinarily gifted poets, prose and protest poets and our poetic energy) from the world for far too long. For too long we have confronted a 'dark' history, 'dark' chapters in our journey, a 'dar...k' Africa that was magical yet unseen, a 'dark' past with even 'darker' case histories. Africa was seen as 'the Outsider'. In the months since I have come to engage, connect, communicate, share my life with regards to my literary work and opinion with this stalwart community, I have come to learn that we use and channel every firsthand emotional experience as a catalyst in our writing. This means a catalyst in the arrangment of our words, our legacy, our vision that we bring forth with a fluid authentic and genuine purpose. This season has brought with it (fierce) friendship, (fierce) respect, (fierce) faith and (fierce) loyalty. We are the generation of New Africa. We are the voice of Everything. Everything that is most pure and relevant.See more


  1. soo great Moyo happy to meet you here. you can also visit my new blog and send back constructive comments