Issue 12.3-13.1 | Summer 2014/Fall 2014 / Guest Edited by Kim F. Hall, Monica L. Miller, and Yvette Christiansë

A Hole in the Sky

Download “A Hole in the Sky” (PDF) here. Reprinted with permission from World Literature Today.

During his distinguished career, Nigerian born writer Niyi Osundare has worked in a variety of genres from scholarly essays to plays and poetry. His works include Songs of the Market Place (1984), Waiting Laughters (1990) Songs of the Season (1990), Selected Poems (1992), Midlife (1993) and Eye of the Earth (1986), which have won him the Noam Award, the Association of Nigerian Authors’ Poetry Prize, and the Commonwealth Poetry Prize. He shares with Shange a performative approach to poetry: orality, particularly from Yoruba traditions, is a key aspect of his poetics. In keeping with his long-standing commitment to social justice issues, “A Hole in the Sky” is a choreopoem about environmental justice. Osundare notes that it should be read “preferably with musical accompaniment” that changes “according to the mood and meaning of each section” and graciously provided us with a video of his performance. The poem originally appeared in the international literary magazine, World Literature Today.