Senegal: I will pronounce your name | Léopold Sédar Senghor

I will pronounce your name, Naett, I will declaim you, Naett!
Naett, your name is mild like cinnamon; it is the fragrance, in which the lemon grove sleeps,
Naett, your name is the sugared clarity of blooming coffee trees
And it resembles the savannah that blossoms forth under the masculine ardour of the midday sun.
Name of dew, fresher than the shadows of tamarind,
Fresher even than the short dusk, when the heat of the day is silenced.
Naett that is the dry tornado, the hard clap of lightening
Naett, coin of gold, shinning coal, you my night, my sun!…
I am your hero, and now I have become your sorcerer, in order to pronounce your names.
Princess of Elissa, banished from Futa on the fateful day.

SenghorLéopold Sédar Senghor has been acclaimed as the father of the Negritude movement (formed by black Francophone intellectuals to reject the racist ideologiest of colonialism and promote their shared African heritage) and one of the greatest Francophone African poets. Born in Senegal, he schooled both in Dakar and in Paris.  He was the first West African to teach in a French university. In 1960, he became the President of the Federal Republic of Mali and later in the same year, the President of Senegal.

 

Republic of Congo: Discovering La Negritude | Frederick Kambemba Yamusangie

Discovering La Negritude
It is like drinking pure water freshly
Taken from a spring
Not Processed, Not Packaged, Not Commercialised

But just Pure and Clean
Water coming from the Mother Earth
Taken (with some effort) by you
And consumed (with not any persuasion) by you

Discovering La Negritude
It is like discovering your unknown heritage
It is like discovering a hidden
Treasure, wealth,

Which have always existed
But not known by you
Wealth, which could transform
Your life completely for the best

Discovering La Negritude
It is like waking up from a deep sleep,
And joining a group of privileged people
Who have fallen in love with names such as:

Aime Cesaire, Leopold Sedar Sengor,
Camara Laye, Sembene Ousmane,
Jean Malonga, Mongo Beti,
Langston Hughes, Zamenga Batukezanga,

Lomami Tshibambe, Ferdinand Oyono Mbia,
Richard Wright, Chiekh Anta Diop,
Patrice Emery Lumumba, Claude Maskay, Franck Fannon,
Felix Tchikaya U’Tamsy, William Egber Du Bois, etc..

And never looked back…

 

Frederick Kambemba Yamusangie is a novelist, playwright and poet who was born in Zaire, Congo. He studied communication engineering at the University of Kent in England and now lives in London.