Title: RIPPLES FROM THE KING’S COURT
Author: Mosobolaje Abimbola
Reviewer: Tola Ijalusi
For years now, it is customary to think of a fluid flow of spectrum of poetry diction as seen in the certain generation of writers whose ambiguity of word close the minds of readers. However, contemporary writers are operatively fetching from a wide variety of language, tradition, religion and culture displaying easy readership as universal appeal. This has Mosobolaje Abimbola has successfully attempted in his chapbook “Ripples From The King’s Court”.
Ripples From The King’s Court does explore actuality, veracity, faith, life and art with an edge tuned conviction pasting bright reality in cold subtle lines, verses and stanzas coacervated in conventional style.
The author’s depiction can obviously be related to the league of young Nigerian writers who draws style from Niyi Osundare in accessibility of diction but witty weave of words in conjured imageries.
The collection of poems opens up with questions that defiles thought in answering at first, questioning the reasoning of the reader to the variableness or numbness of responses with lines such as
why is the man at the alter a master of words
yet a paroxysmal paradox of his own preachings page 9
how just is justice page 10
The poet sees his questions as seeds whose answers are lightening fruits for the peace of his soul drawing an inconclusive statement to his rhetoric questions.
if you find answers for these seeds
please drop their lightening fruits into my basket of heaviness
that i may fetch some peace for my soul page 10-11
The poets continues his question trail in the quest for freedom as he wrote ‘breaking free’, meeting relatives for answers but Mother made him knew the colour of heaven, Papa paid expensively with quietness, Uncle stammered with silence, Aunty replied with the knits of her teeth, Teacher ran into tower of sighs and grandmother said not to count the teeth in the mouth of the gods while the sky was above.
but the stars borrowed me a lantern to see the greater light;
to question the number of lines in a rail
is the beginning of breaking into the air,
it is learning to pass a bag of air through the passage of nose
breaking free is learning to question the sky
till you can walk over it page 16
Abimbola was able to bring culture in expression of life in poem ‘omo ayò (a game seed)’ where he engaged his African indigenous language ‘Yoruba’ in his art with expressions such as ‘eré là n f’omo ayò se- we use a game seed for a game’. He also engaged life in hope spelt ‘weep not oh child’ giving comfort and encouragement.
weep not oh child,
the waters that baptise your eyes in pains
shall also baptise them for joy and gains.
linger a bit more.
you shall blossom, much more. Page 24
An unfailing tone of Faith floored this collection of poems as Abimbola taught us ‘How to Pray’ and as he mildly fused his poems with biblical allusions.
while the world is running itself into red seas,
how to break a heart page 17
they have forgotten sabbath is made for the man
not man for the sabbath
‘omo ayò (a game seed)’ page 20
Might come like a thief in the night
and we won’t be afraid
‘omo ayò (a game seed)’ page 20
on the lips of strangers at the river bank of babylon;
Homecoming I page 26
truly, the kingdom of god is not in meat and drinks
and this world is indeed not my home… page 46
A Call From Home, the assuasive central theme of this collection holds liberalism, self discovery of mixed metaphors depicting the essence of manhood.
i have learnt the heart of freedom,
it is a journey from the mind to the hand, then to the legs
and its song tastes sweet only when it is cooked…
homecoming page 30
As oppose to the arch nature of this collection, Abimbola played fine words in his emotional thrilling, captivating ‘A Love Poem’ that rails the soul to the pole of romance failing to sustain the thirsts by teaching one ‘How to break a heart’ collapsing the conscience for breaking and mending a lover by making her bleed to life. Thus a paradox.
Ripples from the King’s Court however didn’t come clean as I question Abimbola use of Language. For a Nigerian writing in American diction worries me if he is writing for western audience with words like colors but consequent use of ‘baptise’ makes me forgive. Perhaps, a typographical error.
Mosobolaje Abimbola has answered to a call from home, now he stands at the threshold to be a key Nigerian poet of his generation if he would honour yet expede the old pattern, ameliorate his creativity and nourish his stylish voice bringing a worthwhile identity to the fruitful journey of African literature in the light of lyrics, culture, satire, poetic techniques and structure, Christian imagery and literary consciousness.
Tola Ijalusi writes from Ibadan, Nigeria. He has had his poems published on various literary journals and magazines such as Kreative Diadem, PIN Quarterly Journal, Kalahari Review, WORD RHYMES and RHYTHMN, Tuck Magazine, The Poet Community, EGC Creativity, PAROUSIA Magazine etc and published anthologies such as Peace Is Possible, Muse For World Peace II Poetry Anthology, The Reeest Verses Poetry Anthology.
Also, his poems were featured in Poems Woman Scream 2016 Nigeria – Antologia Grito de Mujer. He took third in the February 2016 Nibstears Poetry Contest.
He enjoys Reggae and Country Music. He is the Managing Editor of PAROUSIA Magazine, an online Christian Art and Literary Magazine.