In Riverine Of Womanhood, Angela Adigwe interrogates words plunge into emotions
Author: Angela Chidinma Adigwe
Publisher: Redletter Crib Signature
Reviewer: Sonny Kaku
Year of Publication: 2021
Title: Purple Butterflies
Human beings love to read works whose words are not forced. They love words with rhythm and enunciations that do not only take the reader down memory lanes but are poignant and laden with meanings.
Little wonder poetry is in every culture. The blocks of life are made of different dimensions of specificity and layers of unfolding crusts of words.
Adigwe’s words in the poem, Riverine of Womanhood, expose what it means to be a woman in this age and the avalanche of responsibilities she bears.
In the title poem, Riverine of womanhood, she interrogates what it means to be a woman in society. The burdens and beams of expectations laden on them and the cross they have to bear daily.
The persona in the poem lives in the throes of inconveniences womanhood face. Going from satisfying every entity in the society and obeying rules against their own well-being. The life of a woman can be a dune of stress; the grace with which they navigate such stress is not only a marvel but also calls for recognition. How a woman takes up every form to fulfil her calling, how she bends and breaks to mould and make a home. A woman will always be a mystery for years and years untold. You’ll surely feel her use of words and well craft mix of metaphors, litotes and synaesthesia.
In the poem, Ozymandias, she narrates the effrontery of a contemptuous king that brags about eternal fame whose remains are dug out of a pile of sands in the desert, trunkless and broken frames.
The poet reminds humanity how to stay humble in this terra firma. She recalls the life of a larger-than-life king whose braggadocio and contemptuous adulation of his existence plunged him into irrelevance and his works swallowed by time-bound amnesia. His trunkless remains find a lonesome desert that has nothing, but a faded inscription of his inglorious emphasis that he is the king of kings and when others see the works he has done, they despise themselves and despair.
Adigwe admonishes her readers to stay humble in spite of their achievements for all that will remain of humanity will still be memories not ruined by time.
In the poem, ozymandias, she says:
do not fumble about your distinction
nor curse the hats of fallen men
do not oppress those on the hole-ridden boat of effort, drifting,
toiling for that big catch,
you are the crest of a crashing wave
Purring through all the pages will make you sit at the edge of your seat. This is a beautiful piece of work.