Idanre and Other Poems

One long poem and an eclectic mix of short poems from the Nobel Prize-winning Nigerian playwright, novelist, poet, and polemical essayist Wole Soyinka.

Wole Soyinka is one of Africa's outstanding writers. He is already well known in the United States as a playwright; two of his plays, The Trials of Brother Jero and Kongi's Harvest, were produced off-Broadway in New York. A number of his plays and a novel have been published but so far only a handful of his poems have appeared in anthologies and journals.

This collection consists of a long poem and a number of shorter ones. Idanre, the long one, was written especially for the Commonwealth (British) Arts Festival (1965) and is a creation myth of Ogun, the Yoruba God of Iron. The other poems range from a meditation on the news of the October Massacres in Northern Nigeria (1966) to a wry lament "To My First White Hairs" and the love poem "Psalm."