SEVERAL RWANDAN POETS have published different collections of poetry in English but few have published them in Kinyarwanda. This shows how most poets, especially the younger generation, are more comfortable writing poetry in foreign languages than in the vernacular.
Yves Muhizi, a 25-year-old poet in the making, is one of them. After reading a lot of poems and realizing that what he was writing was poetry, in 2016 he decided to learn more about the art of English poetry, after all the learning materials were available to him.
He had started earlier in 2013 when he was in fourth grade with less knowledge of this literary genre. Nowadays, he writes superb poems in English although he rarely writes in Kinyarwanda because he does not know enough about the Kinyarwanda language of poetry.
“It’s sad that our generation does not know Kinyarwanda. Most parents prefer their children to learn foreign languages and therefore they do not learn Kinyarwanda as they should, ”he said.
On May 15, Muhizi released a collection of poems titled Love Tails, a title he pulled from the tail of a snake that contains venom. When asked why he compared love to venom, he explained that it is because it can be a force, a weapon, and also be used in the most powerful things in the world that sometimes result in death. .
Muhizi’s collection includes over 50 well-thought-out works in two parts: prose poetry and poetry. The prose poetry part encompasses themes such as love, divinity, patriotism, and parental love, while the poetry part includes poems that involve different stages of a relationship.
“I chose to write about love because it’s worth it. When you look at the world today you find that love is something to talk about and remind people of. This book aims to show people that love is still alive and has a giant meaning in our lives. So, in this book, readers should expect change, recognition, knowledge and the melody of poetry. He tells.
Muhizi not only writes poems, he also performed some of them at different events like Spoken Word Rwanda. He loves poetry because it is linked to everyday life. Through his art of poetry, he uses a few words to tell the whole story.
Given the comments he receives from his readers, his poems are authentic and directly relevant.
Asked about his opinion on poetry in Rwanda, Muhizi explained that it is a language that most Rwandans do not speak and that some do not even know. He believes that teaching Kinyarwanda poetry and poetry in general from an early age is an essential way to improve their critical thinking and their sense of imagination.
“I realized that children learn poems in English in elementary schools. That’s good, but they should also be familiar with Kinyarwanda poetry, ”he said.
He testifies that poetry has played a vital role in the person he is today. It opened up his mind and made him think broadly, as well as see the world in a way that can benefit his community. He uses poetry to present messages that heal people and address issues they are afraid to talk about.
Completing his collection of poetry took a lot of time and effort. This is because he wanted his content to be authentic, relevant, and practical. However, his biggest challenge was that most of the publishing houses he contacted in Rwanda did not want to publish poetry.
So he had to find an answer for the publication of his book via an online publishing site, Stori Africa, which published his ebook and took care of the marketing part, while he takes care of himself. printing hard copies.
Muhizi is a member of Writers Space Africa-Rwanda (WSA-R), a community that provides learning and networking platforms for Rwandan writers, especially poets. He is inspired by everything around him and famous poets like Jericho Brown and Saul Williams.
Some of his notable poems include “A Solace”, “Entanglement” and “A Trip To Mississipi”. He is currently a civil engineering student at the University of Rwanda, College of Science Technology.
For more information about him or if you would like to get a copy of his book, you can contact him by email: [email protected] or via social networks: IG: yves-mu, Twitter: yvesmuhizi