“Today, thoughts of you
came rushing like a danfo driver
I must have been in
a hurry for something –
it turned out to be you.
on impulse, I reach for your photo. (…)
at first, I laughed, then I smiled
soon my heart lost its rhythm
my eyes their pride
and my tears washed down your face”
Love, pain, friendship, political rebellion, homage to the elders and hope for the future are all encompassed in this collection of poems which is like a map of the poet’s interior landscapes painted with his own vision of life.
If the coming-of-age literature is almost exclusively in prose, here is an example of poetry that can draw the road from childhood and youth to maturity and knowledge. It’s also a road that involves the past and the future, the family, episodic encounters, revelations- all this creates the ever-changing identity of the poet.
Bolajoko Olusanya’s poems are lyrical and visual, sensible and sharp, and give the reader the sense of the universality of experience: even if the events illustrated by drawings are rooted in Nigeria, the experience they describe speaks to any reader regardless of his natvie culture. It is here the sign of important writing- that it spreads beyond its language and voice and speaks in the name of a generation anchored not in one country, but in all the world.
Nocturnal Notes by Bolajoko Olusanya
978-1975849184 / CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (November 16, 2017)
Review by Ioana Danaila
Ioana Danaila was born in Romania. She graduated from University Lyon 2 Lumière with a Masters in African Postcolonial Literature and a First degree in French for Non-Francophone people. She published a collection of short stories and translated books from French to Romanian. She speaks Romanian, French, English, and Spanish, and teaches English language and literature to highschool students in France.