When shall the ones in diaspora return ?
I ask when shall they set foot upon our soil again?

When shall the sun from Kumasi no longer scare our brothers from their sunset of police Brutality?

When shall Trevor Martins leave America for Lagos or Accra or Freetown? Don’t wait till another young blood is spilled.

Africa is home,
come back home,
though not as deceitfully beautiful as the shining metal of death pleading self defence;
yet, it can be as beautiful as the words of Marcus Garvey, surely as real as the honourable blood sacrifice of Malcom X.

When are we going to claim the Nile as ours?
When shall the princes of the North accept who they are?
When shall the nation at the feet of Africa sow its torn xenophobic clothes?

I sprout forth from thee,
yet you are a seed planted in me,
growing always with me,
I am from Africa,
for I’m first a Man labelled, Blackman.


how the logo for akewi arts house was derived

I remember the concept behind Akewi Art House started as “Pagos Arts Society”; then it became “African Literary something something”…lol… then I focused more on who I am and how I wish to become who I think I am. Surprisingly, through the ancient means and ways came the final name, Akewi Arts House.

Designing the logo took me another two years even after the name was already kept safe in my heart. I would sketch some of my thoughts into lines and shapes but it never worked. Not until one day, one beautiful day I was at the Lagos International Airport; an old man approached me from far. He said, “Son, I love your appearance, you depict Africa…” he rocked his agbada and left, probably felt fulfilled.

I laughed it off, and I simply forgot about it. As God would have it, right beside me was a close relative of Chinua Achebe. I did not know until he looked at the back cover design of my book, Commoner’s Speech. He introduced himself, and asked for a copy, which he gave me a good amount of money as an encouragement.

On getting to Akanu Ibiam International Airport, I took a taxi down to Augustine Nnamanni Campus of Nigerian Law School, Enugu. It was while at the “owner’s corner” of the pale green Toyota Camry, with a lovely music of Oliver De Coque, serenading my African spirit that the encomium of the old man I met at Lagos International Airport rang a bell in my head.

I brought out a pen I had persuaded my father to let go for me. It was a black and gold fountain pen, probably nothing close to what a new generation lover would appreciate. I had dropped my handbag as well in the Toyota Camry’s trunk, so I had to use my ticket flyer as a jotter. Unfortunately, nothing much was achieved for another ten months concerning the logo for Akewi Arts House.

During my service year in Enugu, I rented an apartment (No, it was a face me I face you sort of accommodation) with a colleague. We shared the room and its duties. While he cooked our beans with little or no palm oil and hustled for pure water, I would be in my corner with one hand thinking about the logo for Akewi Arts House, and also watching the pot from being pushed off our little stove by the guerrilla chickens with whom we shared shelter.

At night, I would usually go to the roof of the newly constructed building within the compound, with my flashlight and writing tools, hoping that the inspiration would come. Alas! It never came through that means.

It finally came on a Monday morning. I followed my senior state counsel to appear before a court of justice in Enugu, concerning a land matter. I was bored and angry that day, not just because of the congestion in the court room; but because most lawyers in the court room that day were busy exchanging pleasantries while some were on their phones, and never even bothered to learn from the Judge (who himself barely heard three cases before rising).

As I stood up with the files and headed out of the courtroom, I passed an accused person, he looked at me and smiled, I tried hiding my disappointment with the day’s proceedings by showing him my front broken tooth as well; he proudly said with his Igbo accent, “my lawyer with Africa in his head”… My senior state counsel laughed at me hysterically and asked if I had known the accused before, I simply told him no. Nevertheless, I could not get the man’s words off my mind. That day, exactly 3’O clock, I bought a cardboard paper, ruler and pencil, and I drew the logo for Akewi Arts House. Unfortunately, I never knew the accused person’s name or even his nature of offence. However, until this day, I salute his creativity even while in captivity.

First, it was Commoner’s Speech (2011 and 2014), then recently followed with Cries From The Ocean (2015)… If things go according to plans, Akewi Arts House will have a well packaged traditional launching for both of them later on this year in Nigeria.

IMG_20140714_172613_1AkewiArtsHouse Logo

Saxophone vibes of Enoch Ojotisa at Windmill Lane Recording Studios.

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the art of writing is within the soul,

but to a gifted soul, every sound is a musical note.