Agbleze Selorm was born in April 1987 to Mr. Geoffrey Agbleze and Ms. Akambi Esinam. Selorm is a former student of Mawuli school, Ho and is currently reading Bsc. Agricultural science in the University of Ghana, Legon. He resides at Denu, in the Volta region of Ghana and likes reading and writing poetry as well as engaging in educative discussions.
Five Questions with Agbleze Selorm:
1. "You are the rain" takes on a special meaning in regards to the recent devastating floods in Northern Ghana. As terrible a toll as the floods had on the North, they also filled the Akosombo reservoir and allowed for an (at least temporary) end to the power-outage cycles that have crippled the country. Can you speak more of these two faces of water?
Water is an essential part of our lives and it expresses its usefulness in different ways and to different extents. This ranges from the first bath after birth to the last bath before burial. However, water in other terms is a danger to life and property.
Water in its clean form is health, water in the contaminated form is death. Water in just enough quantities is useful for plant growth but water in excessive quantities destroys our crops. Water is wonderful under control and very destructive when in control. Jacob (in The Bible) was right when he used water to describe the unstable nature of his son, Reuben (Genesis 49:4).
These two faces of water (its usefulness and destructiveness) were thus of great inspirational use to me as I tried to touch on the effects of colonialism on Ghana, and Africa as a whole, in this poem, "You Are The Rain."
2. Who do you write for? For yourself? Your local community? Society in general? Who do you imagine you are communicating with when you write?
Well, most of the poems I write are letters to my soul, that is to say that I try to represent what I felt or thought, real or imagined, in words so that I can read and appreciate it fully. However, in recent times, my poems have been directed to anyone who might just stumble over them.
3. Given Ghana's political struggles, do you feel a need to make your poems 'political'?
I do not really feel the need to make my poems political. Nevertheless, I am currently feeling a slight shift of my usual topics from expressing internal thoughts to more external and social issues. Maybe politics might be the next victim.
4. Who do you turn to for support in your writing? Are there other writers who review and comment on your work? If not, would you like more of this?
I do not turn to anyone specifically for support in my writing. Most of my friends to whom I submit my poems for admiration and comments are not writers. I will therefore be very grateful to enjoy more reviews of my poems by fellow writers.
5. How do you find the distribution of poetic admiration and discussion at Legon between African and European writers? Is it balanced? Or is one side emphasised to the detriment of the other?
I do not have a clear idea of the distribution of academic poetry discussion between African and European writers on campus as this is mostly undertaken by the literature students. However, Open Air Theatre, a radio discussion programme on poetry organized by Radio Univers (the University's official radio station) discusses poems submitted to them by writers, and these are mostly African.
Agbleze's Past Profiles:
Issue 1.14, June 23rd-29th, 2007