Author Profile - Cosmas Mairosi


Cosmas Mairosi was born on February 8th, 1977 in Mudzi, Zimbabwe. He grew up in the rural area of Rusape in Manicaland province. He is am a qualified primary schoolteacher by profession, holds a diploma in Education (distinction in English). Cosmas is a performance poet, writer, and arts trainer in children's performing arts.

Cosmas' poems have won numerous awards, and his poems and short stories have been published in Writers Scroll, Teacher's Voice and New Voices Magazine. One of his poems is featured in the international anthology 'CHE IN VERSE', published by Aflame Books.

Five Questions with Cosmas Mairosi:

1. How long have you been writing poetry?

Since I was at secondary school, form 3, in 1992. So fifteen years to be exact.

2. Who are your favourite poets? Which poets have most inspired and informed your work?

I love refined poetry. I sometimes come across very good poems I tend to like but might not remember their authors. I like 'Ozymandias' and 'Ode to a Nightingale' but the poets that come to the fore on my list are Alfred Tennyson, Wilfred Owen, Chenjerai Hove, Albert Nyathi, Mzwakhe Mbuli and Thomas Hardy.

Owen and Hardy have had the most impact on my written work, while Nyathi and Mbuli have influenced my performance work. I like Owen for the pity in his poetry which he expressed at the expense of skill and craft.

3. What do you hope to accomplish with your poetry?

In the beginning was the word... and the word was poetry. Poetry is life. Poetry is reality. I hope to make people appreciate that poetry is an integral part of their lives. I also hope to change people's lives for the better and also contribute to the perfection of the trade.

4. Are you involved in any sort of writing communities? Are you connected with other poets in your community?

I am the vice chairman of the National Executive Committee of the Budding Writers Association of Zimbabwe(BWAZ). I was the Special Affairs Coordinator during the African Drums Poetry Festival in December 2007 which was attended by poets from Zambia, Zimbabwe and Namibia. I am also a member of the Zimbabwe Poets for Human Rights Association, Global Arts Trust and Zimbabwe Readers Association. I work with writers at grassroots and advanced level. I meet other poets regularly at arts and writers events such as workshops, poetry slams, and writing festivals.

5. What do you think is the role of poetry, and literature in general, in the politics of Africa?

Writers are there to chide and to cheer. The politics in Africa has caused many wrong turns and a lot of suffering. It is the role of literature to shed light on where we have gone wrong and to point the way out.

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