Reviews and commentaries of ‘Sounds of Laughter: An Anthology of Poems from the Soul’

Book Review By Carrey Francis Ronjey. Carrey Francis Ronjey is a constant wanderer and a chaser of multiple dreams. When he is not busy being unsettled in Nairobi, he’s locked up in Solitude dreaming. He runs his blog www.nairobiunderground.com and a bunch of other stuff.

Robert Frost’s idea that “Poetry is when an emotion has found thought and the thought has found words” can never be more accurate as you read any line from Sahro Ahmed’s anthology of poems. Hers is a sincere and artful expression of how she feels about life, death and hope for one day finishing the gathering of that which was long scattered in numerous directions.

To better understand this work, its best to first know a little bit about the poet. Sahro Ahmed Koshin left her motherland, Somalia as a child. Many years later, she has gone back to participate in rebuilding the country and healing some of the deepest wounds of 21st century. This she does with the great care of a mother, skill and beauty of a great artist and hope of a fragile plant.

One does not need to know Sahro, or even the story of Somalia to see the pride she has for being Somali and at the same time, the loath she has for the negativities among her people. “You Lit a Candle” is a sad celebration of the life of a slain peacemaker while “The Somali Tea” is one of the poems in the book celebrating the rich cultural heritage that the coastal country has.

The beauty is that the whole collection is written in very light verse which makes it easy for anyone to read and understand without losing a dot. There is also depth and insight if you can figure out the struggles that Somalis live with every day for the last twenty years.

One theme that stands out the most throughout the experience is the issue of identity but also women’s empowerment. Identity- could be as a result of the need for everyone to be proud of whom they are. “I Am” and “I Refusecome out especially as a defiant declarations of her identity as a Somali woman. The strength of the Somali woman and  of womanhood in general is also largely celebrated in many pieces but especially in her award-winning, much-acclaimed poem “I Am a Somali Woman” and “Tell Me Somali Mother”.

It’s quite easy to relate and draw lessons from this book as Sahro alludes to war that has for several years torn Somalia apart. The verses will also invoke in you the pain of always carrying a bleeding country in your heart. “Blood Of an Innocent” says in part that,

“The chill that sets in freezes him so

Yet he hides in the warmth of sorrow

And refuses to be thrown out of his only home

He will stay here and take his stand…”

The love for and emphasis on pride for being black is magnified through “Black Mystery” where she says,

“…Hard times

Are dark times

Dark times

Are black

But

Black

Is

Beautiful

Because

I know

I am”

However, she goes ahead to say in “Shades Of Skin” that “We are all different, but yet the same”.

The book in some light comes out as a representation of Somalia and its people as it’s been known world over for the last two decades, but with a lot more than the same world has ever imagined; dreams for a better day, the unique and beautiful culture, hope, love and self-awareness. One of the most powerful and my most favorite phrase in the book is about love and it that “…no one is perfect, until you are in love”.

Sahro is an artist as she is an ambassador. Simply put, anyone that holds “Sounds Of Laughter” in their hands holds the whole of Somalia as a country but with a little bonus of every other part of the world.

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Review by Deqa Osman. Deqa Osman is a former VOF Correspondent with WorldPulse and currently a student at Future Generations Graduate School. Puntland, Somalia

“Sahro Koshin takes us on a journey of emotions through her poems as we smile, tear up, and cringe. Every poem has a different story to tell and touches us in a certain way. There are the deep, heavy poems that tackle serious issues in our Somali community such as FGM, GBV, inequality, tribalism and so on.

There are the feminism and resistance poems that inspire, empower, and remind us of vocal female poets from our Somali ancestors. And then there are the lighthearted joyous poems that make us smile, feel loved by family and friends, and soften our hearts as humans.”

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Dhaqanka Online

Yes, the Somali woman is complicated and does not fit into one box! Thank you Sahro for making that needed point in poetry.

Sahro koshin waa qof ku dayasho mudan oo ay dadaal iyo codkarin ay ka muqato … aad ban u la dhacay gabaygaas
Ma Shaa Allah. .. what lovely words! !!
beautiful poem! May Allah bless our sisters!
Maansha allh Sahro! Aad baan ugu qiirooday gabaygaaga!… Keep up abaayo!!.
I am speechless
Beautiful. Powerful. Inspiring. I am a Somali woman.
Abdalla Warsame
I admire how she gives out a good picture about somali Women unlike the one showed by International Organisations and the local NGOs.I alsolike how she is all covered up , diinteena macaan baa dhaqankeeda ka muuqda
Abdulaziz Gabax, MA Student, Malaysia
MashaAllah, waa wax wanaagan in lamaalo maskaxda Sahro iyo dadka la mid ah oo waayo aragnimo iyo aqoon xeel dheer isku darsaday si looga faa’iido. Waad mahadsan tihiin Abukar Awale iyo Sahro

Cover

10620629_366524280174265_2638776262334204979_n

10711132_366524370174256_1843009270199885416_n

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s