Thursday, October 19, 2017

"Men Made Out of Words" ( Wallace Stevens)

Wallace Stevens ni mmoja wa washairi maarufu wa Marekani. Mara ya kwanza kupata fursa ya kuyasoma mashairi yake ni nilipokuwa ninasomea shahada ya uzamifu katika huo kikuu cha Wisconsin-Madison,1980-86. Nilichukua kozi kadhaa katika idara ya ki-Ingereza, mojawapo ikiwa "Poetry." Alitufundisha profesa John Brenkman.

Profesa Brenkman alikuwa na mtindo wa kufundisha ambao ulilifanya somo la "Poetry" livutie. Kwa uzoefu wangu wa kabla ya hapo, katika kusoma Tanzania, ushairi wa ki-Ingereza ndilo lilikuwa somo gumu kuliko mengine. Nilidokeza jambo hilo katika kijitabu changu cha Notes on Okot p Bitek's Song of Lawino.

Tangu nilipofundishwa na Profesa Brenkman, jina la Wallace Stevens limekuwa linanivutia, na daima niko tayari kusoma mashairi yake. Huu ni ushahidi wa jambo ambalo linafahamika vizuri, yaani namna mwalimu bora anavyoweza kumwathiri mwanafunzi. Jana nimeangalia kitabu changu cha mashairi, The Voice That is Great Within Us, na shairi moja lililonivutia ni "Men Made Out of Words," la Wallace Stevens. Ni shairi ambalo limeandikwa kwa uchache wa maneno na tamathali za usemi, na falsafa yake inachangamsha bongo.

MEN MADE OUT OF WORDS (Wallace Stevens)

What should we be without the sexual myth,
The human revery or poem of death?

Castratos of moon-mash--Life consists
Of propositions about life. The human

Revery is a solitude in which
We compose these propositions, torn by dreams,

By the terrible incantations of defeats
And by the fear that defeats and dreams are one.

The whole race is a poet that writes down
The eccentric propositions of its fate.


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