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Africa art Igbo culture Isuikwuato Short story

Dialogue With The Storyteller 2

Storyteller: Ifochakpi! Audience: Waa!! Storyteller: Nkita nyara akpa? (When a dog picks up his backpack?) Audience: Nsi agwu n’ohia! (All faeces in the bush go wanting) Storyteller: Spread your mats and sit at the foot of the tree. It was a long day for me, we could use a good story to wrap it up. […]

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Africa art Igbo culture Isuikwuato nature poems night poems

Poem: The Brook

Pollution to the Human Mind I do think that living in large towns for a long time can constitute pollution to the simple human mind. Each time I return to the countryside, I feel a mix of vibrant and enthusiastic energy. Living in dry cities drains me fast. I could try to live in one […]

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Africa art Igbo culture Isuikwuato

Dialogue With The Storyteller 1

Entry Of The Storyteller Storyteller: Ah, it’s a monstrously cold evening. Hurry, take a seat closer to the fireside, warm your hands and wait for the night’s tale. I may tell stories of love, adventure, life’s lessons, and that of the animal world. Remember, these stories serve to teach the ways of life. It has […]

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Africa Igbo culture proverbs

African Proverb: On the Child Strapped Behind The Mother

Igbo: Nwata akwô na azú amaghī na ùzó di anya English: A child strapped to the back of the mother does not know the journey is far. Origin: The Igbo people of Southern Nigeria use this adage. In many societies, it’s prevalent to see mothers, young and old, strap their babies behind them, especially when […]

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Africa, Poetry and Love culture/tradition Igbo culture Love and Christianity Nigeria

A Grateful African Poem

Now gather by the fireside While we wait on yams to roast, Drying our hands in the warmth This quiet evening, cold and mild We wait to dream A fluffy pillow beckoning, The day tales also waiting, A joyful evening it seems The sweet fellowship Of Nature’s trick and craft Upon the retreat fell, to […]

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Africa culture/tradition folklore Igbo culture

The Importance of Folklore In Igboland (Uru akụkọ ifo baara n’ala Igbo)

The Igbo Storytelling Tradition Before the coming of the white man, the Igbo cultural society educated themselves through folktales. Storytelling was a revered tradition used to pass the wisdom of ancestors to the younger generation. It is assumed that anyone who can tell a good story is wise. The Igbo people believe in a supernatural […]

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Africa folklore Igbo culture Short story

Folklore: Tortoise and The Spirits 1

Growing up Growing up was fun. School holidays took me to the countryside, where I was acquainted with folklore life. I have done strange but funny things like wearing a girl’s skirt to play with other children (that’s a story for another day), returning to the stream to bury a dead crab I killed, attempted […]

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Africa culture/tradition education Igbo culture

Quote on Greatness

“You cannot plant greatness as you plant yams or maize. Whoever planted an Iroko tree — the greatest tree in the forest? You may collect all the Iroko seeds in the world, open the soil and put them there. It will be in vain. The great tree chooses where to grow and we find it […]

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Africa folklore Igbo culture

Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe

Chinua Achebe was born on November 16, 1930, in Ogidi, Nigeria.”The sun will shine on those who stand before it shines on those who kneel under them.” — Chinua Achebe, THINGS FALL APARTABOUT THINGS FALL, APART THINGS FALL APART tells two overlappings, intertwining stories centered around Okonkwo, a “strong man” of an Igbo village in […]

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Africa Igbo culture opinion proverbs

Igbo Proverb: Sound of The Bitter Cola

Igbo: Ùda akùilu abùghí ùtō ya English: Bitter Cola doesn’t taste like its sound (literally). Background: Just like the name, bitter cola is a very bitter fruit! Sometimes I do wonder why it’s not called a ‘very bitter cola.’ Alongside the kola nut and garden egg, it is commonly used as a ‘welcome fruit’ in […]

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Africa culture/tradition Igbo culture lullaby Pastoral

Folklore: The Hippo and His Seven Wives

I heard the Wind tell this story Storyteller: Ifochakpii! Audience: Waa!!! Storyteller: Gather my friends. It’s time to tell a story. It’s time also to hear a tale. Gather by the fireside, warm yourselves. Bring the little ones to the center. Keep them more hospitable for the night, and her cold hands are nigh. Sit […]

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Africa culture/tradition folklore Igbo culture

Tradition: Storytelling

The African Storytelling Tradition When I, the storyteller, say: Ifochakpii! You, the audience, will reply, Waa!! (Pronounced as ‘War!’) This is the Igbo people’s storytelling tradition. There are different ways of introducing a story to the audience. To the Igbo people, it starts with a chant-like ranting that tries to capture all present attention. So […]

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Africa education Igbo culture languages Nigeria

Igbo Language Alphabet

This is to respond to your requests for a clearer, easy to read Igbo Alphabet, and we’ve come up with this, which we believe is simplified. It’s important to take your attention to the alphabet structure because it’s the key to unlock your understanding of this beautiful language. Twenty-seven distinct letters are contained in this […]

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Africa Africa, Poetry and Love culture/tradition education folklore Igbo culture lifestyle Nigeria opinion proverbs

Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart: Proverbs and Meaning

Onye aturu ilu kowaa ya, ego eji luo nne ya efuola ohia. Before I start this post permit me to greet Igbo people; those who own the proverbs I’m about to explore; Ndi Igbo kwenu! Ekelem unu o. Ndewonu. •Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe on Igbo traditional Isi-agu attire INTRODUCTION: PROVERBS There are many definitions for proverbs […]

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Africa culture/tradition folklore Igbo culture Nature Nigeria

Home: Africa

High up above the hills of Africa, the dark-winged clouds of the night were still folded above the village and surrounding valley. Man and the domestic animals that were his slept. But the antelope of the forest and the small fleet-footed gazelle were wide awake. In a short time, early morning dew descends from ancient […]

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Africa culture/tradition education folklore Igbo culture lifestyle Nature Pastoral Series

Diaries of a Village Boy: The Leopard Spirit 8

That morning before the early hunters left their homes for the forest, Papa was already on his way to Ndi-Ikele to welcome the priest, newly arrived from Trinidad and Tobago. It was breezy and cloudy that morning, it seemed it would rain any moment. Trees, especially the palm took to joyful procession when I stepped […]

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Africa culture/tradition education folklore Igbo culture Lessons from Experiences lifestyle Nature Pastoral Poetry Series

African childhood Memories

I long for my childhood days in rural Africa, To fill my lungs with morning air descending from hills And to till farmland that stretch into sunset Golden sunrise always kept everyone speechless And when birds welcome the day with choruses Sweet breezes gather to battle the sun warmth Infants may resume their wailing culture […]

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Africa culture/tradition education folklore Igbo culture lifestyle Nature Pastoral Poetry

Messenger

Kokookoroko kokorokoro A greeting called from afar The children ran out excited As if the message was for them But then who knows? Heads up, listen attentively Komkom korookom Another beat rang out Pushing the mild hit Into the ears of the heaviest village sleeper ‘Oh how cute, it is one of the King’s messengers’ […]

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Africa culture/tradition education folklore Igbo culture lifestyle Nature Pastoral

Tradition: Breaking the Kola nut

Onye wetara oji wetara ndu (Igbo) He who brings Kola brings life… Kola nut is a symbol of hospitality and friendship in Nigeria. While other food can be cooked, the Kola nut needs no special preparation before presentation. It’s a bitter fruit of the Kola tree¶, grown all over tropical Africa. In Igbo land, Kola […]

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Africa culture/tradition education Igbo culture lifestyle Nature Pastoral

Tradition: Ohafia War Dance (Ikpirikpi Ogu)

Intro: Ohafia is a town in Abia State in Nigeria, it consists of 26 communities with Elu as the ancestral capital. Many people have asked questions about Ohafia War Dance. In the olden days, Ohafia was known for their bravery during tribal wars. At present, Ohafia is still known as land of warriors. It was […]

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Africa culture/tradition education folklore Igbo culture lifestyle Nature Pastoral

Folktale: The Tortoise and His Broken Shell

Gather around friends. How was your day today? Good to know it was fine. Mine wasn’t bad either. I hope this breezy evening gives us more than this beautiful folktale I’m about to tell. Remember to note the morals that accompany it. I have also italicized the proverb in the story. Once upon a time, […]

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Africa culture/tradition education folklore Igbo culture lifestyle

Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe

Things Fall Apart is a novel written by Nigerian author Chinua Achebe. Published in 1958, its story chronicles pre-colonial life in the south-eastern part of Nigeria and the arrival of the Europeans during the late nineteenth century. It is seen as the archetypal modern African novel in English, one of the first to receive global […]

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Africa culture/tradition education folklore Igbo culture lifestyle Nature Pastoral

What’s in a name?

A name indicates a person, place or thing. It may reflect why a person bear it. For instance, one can say Akpan, the first born or Judy, the mechanic. So a name can serve as a trait, feature or attribute. In African culture, people name their children after circumstances they passed through, events they evidenced […]

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Africa culture/tradition education folklore Igbo culture lifestyle Nature Pastoral

Nostalgia: Traveling memories

I remember my first attempt at hunting. I was a little boy then and just arrived my hometown for holidays. It was fun and I was glad I went home. As a town boy I had little experience in hunting and general country life. Traveling home was a great way to get in touch with […]

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Africa culture/tradition folklore Igbo culture lifestyle Nature Pastoral Series

Diaries of a Village boy: The Leopard spirit 7

Papa said I had to be strong to attend the next Tales by Moonlight night. He also promised I could play and hunt with other children if I got well fast. So I took my medication and exercise seriously. The moonlight night tales come once in a fortnight, sometimes it may be delayed especially during […]

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Africa culture/tradition education Igbo culture lifestyle Nature Pastoral

Another visit to Ovim’s Hills

If you encounter tablelands and rocks, hills and valleys, waterfalls and streams, abundant trees and virgin forests, all set in one quiet countryside, you will agree that Ovim is really blessed. Ovim is situated on ancient hills, a beautiful place for camping and outdoor fun. Each time I visit I get healed by her beautiful […]

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Africa culture/tradition folklore Igbo culture lifestyle Nature Pastoral Series

Diaries of a Village Boy: The Leopard Spirit 6

That night I had another attack. It was midnight and everybody was settled for some sleep. The moon was white, there were no stars and the evening brought mild breezes. Wild dogs and wolves howled from the hilly distance and the night was deafened in their terrifying noise. Night was nobody’s friend those days. Travelers […]

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Africa culture/tradition folklore Igbo culture lifestyle Nature Pastoral

African Folklore

Folklore are tales, legends, superstitions of a particular ethnic population. In Igbo culture and other African societies, story telling is unique, such that it is a passage to transmit the tradition of a place from one generation to another. These tales convey the history, ancient messages and old knowledge. They teach morals and virtues to […]

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Africa culture/tradition folklore Igbo culture Lessons from Experiences lifestyle Nature Pastoral Poetry Series

The Rainmaker’s Tales: Beginning

When I am not making the rain fall To flood the village and farms And to make the river banks overflow Then I will be watching the glittering stars And talking to her, the night and moon Well, the night is never complete without a tale And this is for the sleepy little ones, I […]

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Africa culture/tradition folklore Igbo culture Lessons from Experiences lifestyle Nature Pastoral Poetry

The Rainmaker’s Tales 2

Now it was tradition that young men Cut wood in the neighboring forest Before they are allowed to chose a maiden There was no axe in the town and nearby hamlets So young men did desperate things, Mirtle was a young man, deformed in one hand, Humbly dull, but very courageous Youth of the hamlet, […]

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Africa culture/tradition education folklore Igbo culture lifestyle Love and Christianity Nature Pastoral

True Leadership

Earlier this evening, I overheard the women talk; my mother, aunts, some helpers and my little sister. From my room window, I heard their discussion on the funeral and all they did to make it a success. Usually, I don’t eavesdrop on women chats, but I couldn’t help but listen to this particular discussion. I […]

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Africa culture/tradition folklore Igbo culture Nature Pastoral Poetry

I’m happy motherland!

I’m happy dear motherland, I’m happy! I’m happy to lay my head on your shoulders To sniff your wet hair that smells like cocoa butter! My feet is swift to run to the wild So I wash my feet on the stream’s slow tide I fright mambas and laugh at mating frogs All cold morning […]

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Africa culture/tradition education Igbo culture Love and Christianity Nature Pastoral Poetry

My Soul Longs for Thee

My soul longs for thee, dear motherland To run the patched dusty red muds And to swim in the rivers crisscrossing all over you Let me climb the trees of your forests And drink from the shallow streams My soul longs to nibble the tender pumpkin seeds Freshly cut from hilly farms To dance with […]

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Africa culture/tradition Igbo culture Nature Pastoral Poetry

Family is Energy

For more than a week, the waters of our creek Oko’pia have been chalky. Villagers say each time this happened, an animal (Atah – Alligator) is digging away at the source. I don’t know where the source is and honestly if I knew I wouldn’t go. 😐 Our farm lies further away from the village, […]

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Africa culture/tradition Igbo culture Lessons from Experiences

Umukwu’s Masquerades

I never knew today was Ekpo (masquerade) day in Umukwu, Ovim. I was having a little nap when the noisy drummers arrived with the masquerades. When I was growing up I witnessed many masquerade carnivals and took particular interest in Ebulu–ogu – the biggest and stout masquerade. They are known to be merciless and stubborn. […]

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Africa culture/tradition Igbo culture Nature

Back Home

This morning I and Jindu traveled back to our village. Thanks to the holidays we have enough time to explore and enjoy the quiet countryside. We took the 6.30AM bus and arrived 10.23AM. It wouldn’t take that long but for bad roads and many checkpoints. It is common for Governments to abandon capital projects here. […]

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Africa Igbo culture Nature

In Ovim

I’m back to Ovim Isuikwuato, my hometown. It has been a long week for me, marking and grading students’ math exam. Coupled with the noisy neighbourhood, the stress nearly overwhelmed me. Thank God it’s Friday. Now far away from work and town’s hustle bustle, I can feel myself heal. The surrounding hills – notably Ugwu […]

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Africa culture/tradition folklore Igbo culture Pastoral

The Animal King

Do you know why there is no king in the animal kingdom? Here is a story narrating why. I wrote this poetale a longtime ago. Have fun. Once upon a time In a land far away, Across seven rivers And seven hills Lived a clan of animals They knew no strife No envy, no rivalry […]

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Africa culture/tradition Igbo culture

African Proverbs 14

Consider this proverb from Ethiopia; The mouse is silent while laboring, but when the baby is conceived, she cries.

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Africa culture/tradition Igbo culture Nature

Nature: Best Vacation

Nothing heals faster than Nature and this healing feeling is unexplainable. It’s something everyone should experience. Most vacations should include moving away from hustle bustle and noisy streets of familiarity and town. I can’t say what works for everyone but if you need inspiration or thinking space, I recommend travelling to the countryside, where serenity […]

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