Title: As The Blunt Mind Cracks.
Author: Bara OT
Number of Pages: 65
Release Date: 24th June
Reviewer: Grace Kosa
As The Blunt Mind Cracks is easily going to creep into hearts in no time. The poet’s ability to paint pictures with words goes beyond imaginations. His use of literary devices to make emphasis and unveil his points makes me want to call him an A-list poet.
This is indeed more than just poetry because it took me through the life of the author. I read through the life of a writer who had seen it all. From love, motivations, grief and lamentations; one could envisage that the poet went through the dark tunnels of life and came back to light.
At the start of the piece, the poet acknowledges three figures that have played pivotal roles in his poetry journey.
Bara OT would go on to hit the nail by revealing important information about his past in the startup piece ‘I am’. He writes:
“…i am my father’s pride
his ride or die
he died years ago
so i could ride…”
The poet would paint his late father’s sacrifices in words exposing the reader to what had left him shattered. He would play the role of visionary as he further draws emphasis on his hope for the future. This poem sits perfectly for the preface which is lacking in the collection.
After his introduction in the first piece, the poet is seen to be a hopeless romantic who has been through the thick and thin of love. He writes in ‘odè’ (a Yoruba word for a foolish person):
“…you apprehend me
at the sight of you
as you strike me with a partial stroke…”
The poet reveals his knowledge of medicine on how handcuffed all his body parts act, anytime he sees the woman that he loves. He cries out on how frustrated he has become in showing love – her presence has made him absent minded.
The poet would further reveal love as being entertaining like showbiz in ‘peace is where I find you’. He writes using huge metaphors to seal the deal:
“…this life is a movie
we are the stars
so we bump into paparazzi…”
The poet is also seen to have had an equal share with love and rejection. He reveals rejection in ‘how boys became players’ as he writes:
“…and how do you console a boy?
who has been played –
she enlightens him on handling the console
so he too can play…”
The poet’s knowledge of love is out of earth as he thrills the reader using top-notch literary devices
The end of the love theme would usher the reader into other themes including motivations, lamentations and grief.
The poet would preach the possibility in doing the impossible in an untitled poem that gives entry to the motivation theme. He writes:
“…you could try anything in life
even a blind man opens his eyes
from time to time –
he got visions…”
Lamentation is later seen in the collection as the poet clones himself as a prophet who has been rejected and neglected by his roots. The title is coined from the bible verse ‘John 4.44’ which depicts a prophet being denied respect in his hometown. He writes making use of personification:
“…this nation hoard open doors
as she shows me the way out
the only way to exist
may be to exit…”
Lamentations would know no end as the poet is seen to stay in that subject for a while. He speaks of life as being so hellacious. In ‘a sufferer’s perspective’, he writes:
“…life is a sorrowful symphony
so all what i see on the staff is –
so fa me…”
The book ends with the masterpiece ‘life and death’. The poet is seen to compare life and death. He contradicts the two concepts in every stanza – all the things that come with life and all the things that go with death. He writes:
"...life is unapologetic
it offends without remorse
toss you up and down
like a seesaw
death is the only sorry one
giving birth to sympathies
and allowing happiness to die..."
They say you can travel the world by reading a book. In this poetry book, Bara OT enables the reader travel the world in his shoes, living his moments with every stanza and feeling his emotions with every phrase. It is evident that he has been through it all in his lifetime, and he bears all of those experiences into this incredible work of art.
As the blunt mind cracks as the name implies would crack your brain open projecting the reader’s thought to the climax. This project is insightful and the poet is one who has made a statement with each piece.
This is indeed more than just poetry; it looks promising as though tomorrow it would emerge as a classic. I would not be in a haste to call it the writer’s magnum opus because this is his first official body of work. So I would rather call it his special one.