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The library lives still

The Library is no longer a Building!

Pa Ikhide

For my friend, Uzo Onyemaechi, the Millenium librarian. Biri kwe!

The writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie has a lovely piece in Guernica magazine, Why Are You here?. It is a sobering commentary on what passes for education in Nigeria.  Hear Adichie:

“It is not surprising that parents do not want their children to attend university in Nigeria. Many students themselves would leave if they had the opportunity. About ten years ago, I left after almost three years at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, not so much because of the conditions, which were not good, but because I no longer wanted to study medicine. Now, the student complaints are sadly the same—the classes are overcrowded, no books in the library, no computers, no chemicals in the lab, lecturers force students to buy handouts which are just recycled outdated textbooks, incessant lecturer strikes elongate programs, exam schedules are often haphazard. Private universities…

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Remembering Ekwensi’s spirit: Ode to the Sokugo

Pa Ikhide

For Cyprian Odiatu Duaka  Ekwensi (1921-2007)

Deep in America’s grinding labor mines, my memories hear my childhood chiming the Angelus. I pause to luxuriate in the coming pleasure of tugging at the camphor smell of mama’s wrapper. The bugler stands, starched khaki clean, on the hill of many wars, horns hollering Taps for a warrior struck one last time by the sokugo. Our dispatch-rider, high on joy, and apeteshie, stands tall on giant Fanta bottles of ogogoro balanced on his Triumph motorcycle. Uniformed myrmidon of the coming darkness, dispatch rider of generations of Africa’s worst despots takes a break from ushering yet another coming of yet another dictator and performing somersaults on the motorcycle of many memories, and confirms the final journey of the warrior, Cyprian Ekwensi. Here in America, we shiver at attention in our blue suits – alien regalia offspring of our ancestors apologizing in alien regalia.

cyprian_ekwensi

I…

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Francis: War is Always a Defeat for Humanity!

FEATHERS PROJECT

“Look upon your brother’s sorrow – I think of the children, look upon these – look upon your brother’s sorrow, and do not add to it, stay your hand, rebuild the harmony that has been shattered; and all this not by conflict but by encounter! May the noise of weapons cease!”           

Full Text of Pope Francis Address in the Prayer Vigil for For Peace[Vatican, September 07, 2013]

“‘And God saw that it was good’. The biblical account of the beginning of the history of the world and of humanity speaks to us of a God who looks at creation, in a sense contemplating it, and declares: ‘it is good’. This, dear brothers and sisters, allows us to enter into God’s heart and, precisely from within him, to receive his message. We can ask ourselves: what does this message mean? What does it say to…

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