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Creative writing workshop equips poets

by Sunday Express
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Mohalenyane Phakela

SEVEN poets recently received certificates for completing a two-week creative writing workshop at the Alliance Francaise which was aimed at reviving poetry in the country.

Bangladesh-born poet Hassan Masum and Alliance Francaise director Remi Beghin presented the certificates for the workshop which was conducted by the former with the aim of fostering linkages between local and Bangladeshi poetry.

According to Dr Hassan, the idea is to bridge the gap between international and local poetry whilst also developing the culture of writing in Lesotho.

“The aim is to create a heritage of poetry through writers by hosting workshops to foster unity between Lesotho and Bangladeshi poetry as well as the rest of the globe,” Dr Hassan said of the workshop which ran from 13 April and ended on Friday.

“Alliance Francaise gave us the platform to host the workshops and we started with the seven writers.

“We discussed international poetry as well as the technics of writing and the participants were given different themes to write on and they performed well,” he said.

Dr Hassan said he intended to spread the workshops to high schools throughout the country.

“Some of the teachers like Ms Radah Pillai from Machabeng have already shown interest in having their students participate.

“We plan to have a team of 12 pupils from each school who will participate in a workshop. The idea is to start in Maseru and then spread to other districts until every high school in the country is covered,” Dr Hassan said.

Speaking to Xpress People on the sidelines of the event, one of the seven poets, Lekhooa Montoeli hailed the project as the beginning of the revival of poetry in Lesotho.

“I had stopped writing because there was nothing to motivate and the poetry scene was as good as dead.

“I learned about this workshop from a friend who was already working with Dr Hassan and through it I was able to resurrect the writing spirit and realise that I can change many people’s lives through my work.

“I love poetry and I believe this will further expose us on the international platform,” Montoeli said.


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