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With another me, Ebereonwu sustains his poetic licence

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With a first degree in accounting, a Master’s in financial management and Ph.D. in International Business Management, Ebereonwu C. Tochi is one writer, who has proved that poetic licence is not the monopoly of those that studied arts.

For him, poetry is one medium of expressing a strong inner feeling. With four books to his credit – Lost Laurel (prose), Burden of Solitude (Collection of Poems) , Beyond the Storm (Collection of Poems) and This Sugar is Coated with Quinine (prose), the author released another collection of poems titled, Another Me.

The 92-page collection segmented into three parts speaks volume of the poet’s state of mind — a philosopher by all indications.

He says: “Everything in this publication is a reflection of my philosophy, belief system and experiences. You will see all of them reflected in the book. I think that is why the editor tried to segment the book into different parts.”

The first part of the poem comprises 22 poems that evoke deep feelings in the reader. Some of the titles include, Away without Trail, Certainty, Every Time, Era of Love, My Experience and All for Love. Others are; Crossroads, So Vulnerable, Amazing Love, Solace, Tell Me, Tender Hearts and Another Me – the book title.

In Another Me, the poet wished he had someone like him, with the same ideals and philosophy that would have duplicated his joy.

“Indeed, I wish I had another me

That I would lay my bare heart unto

And would not become eternally cast out

For all sins remain unconfessed
Where confession attracts mortal reprimand.”

The second part contains 19 poems including Mon’s Arms, Oh Lord, My God, Puzzle of Love, This Chain Holds the World and Ultimate Victory.

Others are; Separation, Night Watchman, Lift Me Up and How Forest Survives.

The third part has 23 poems such as Ambush, Gravity, It Smells… The Good Evil, The Happy Boy and The World is not for the Righteous. The poems take care of every issue of life including love, struggles of life, trust, religion and other exigencies of life.

Speaking on the reason some people without literary background do well in all literary genres including poetry, the poet stated that he was lured into the literary world through his communication job.

“For the past 10 to 12 years, I have been in the communications division of my company. They saw the potential in me and quickly took me off from the finance division to communications.

“Writing is my passion and finance is my profession. And here I am, in a situation where my passion has overtaken my profession.”

On why some people who studied English and literary studies, most times, find it difficult to publish books, the poet blamed it partly on the fact they have a mental limitation by the rules of their courses of study.

“Rules stop them from writing. They have filled their heads with all the rules so they don’t have the courage to write for fear of making mistakes or being criticised. But people like us are not weighed down by the rules.

“We just write to express ourselves without any fears. In fact, the more you criticise me, the better for me. Most times, people involved in literary criticism don’t write.”

Speaking on the feelings such creative works bring to his mind, the visibly elated poet said seeing his thoughts put down in a book is always fulfilling and connects him fully to creation.

“It makes me fully identify with creation because I see in me, that part of the creator because any little effort we make is adding towards the entire creation.

“I feel happy that I have been able to make my own contribution in my own little way. Most times when I go through my poems, I feel very happy and wonder how I was able to put them down.”

“That is the challenge most of us face. I can lay claim to being an academic because I have my Ph.D. Also, I do business writing. I work for a multi-national company and all these put together is a huge responsibility.

“When I am in the business environment, I put on my cap as a business communicator because people in business do not have the time for the eloquence and background that come with academic writing. You just write and your key message comes first.

“I strike a delicate balance as a lot of domains struggle for my attention. Poetry is different. It is on its own. You must be in the mood of poetry to write poems. Your poetic licence must be in tune with reality.”

Ebereonwu has no special target audience. According to him, “his works cut across every age bracket.”

“Some of my love poems came from my own immediate experience. When I read them, I immediately remember what happened when I was writing them.

“The beauty of this is that someone out there may domesticate the verses as they relate the themes of my poems to their present situations,” he says.

The poet is a communication expert with a multinational company operating in Nigeria, a literary enthusiast who spends his free time writing. Another Me is the third collection of poems. According to him, he will sustain his poetic licence in spite of the demands of his job..

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Ebereonwu C. Tochi
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