Subscribe to Newsletter
Monthly Newsletter: Join more than 3,000 African literature enthusiasts!
Subscribe for African literature news, and receive a free copy of our "Guide to African Novels."

Valentine’s Day is Upon Us

W riting about love is such a drag. But ’tis the season, so I’ll give it a try. Love, in some ways, is a terrifying thing. With all the images of violence we use to think about love, it’s hard not to give love it’s due as a rather absurd experience. If there is anything that love and empire have in common, it is the desire to conquer another’s heart:

Licence my roving hands, and let them go
Before, behind, between, above, below.
O, my America, my Newfoundland,
My kingdom, safest when with one man mann’d,
My mine of precious stones, my empery ;
How am I blest in thus discovering thee !
To enter in these bonds, is to be free ;
Then, where my hand is set, my soul shall be.

To His Mistress Going to Bed” by John Donne, 1633.

My favorite metaphor for the pangs of love is the aching heart. Does anyone of you reading this post know what an aching, lovesick heart suffers? Mind you, the pain is not figurative. The heart really aches. It’s a strange kind of pain. It travels diagonally from the heart to the frontal lobe and back. At times, breathing may become irregular and strenuous. Some sufferers have reported slight stomach discomfort. Others a phantom hunger. But the shudders, shivers, forgetfulness, and feelings of being lost are mostly universal.

The Gandhi Cure: Look at your feet when you walk in daylight and up at the stars at night. I have it on good authority that it does not work.

In any event, Valentine’s Day is upon us. Be nice and give love to a heart that wants one.

Tags: , , , , ,

I hold a doctorate in English from Duke University and recently joined the Marquette University English faculty as an Assistant Professor. I love teaching African fiction and contemporary British novels. Brittle Paper is the virtual space/station where I play and experiment with ideas on how to reinvent African fiction and literary culture.

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

I hold a doctorate in English from Duke University and recently joined the Marquette University English faculty as an Assistant Professor. I love teaching African fiction and contemporary British novels. Brittle Paper is the virtual space/station where I play and experiment with ideas on how to reinvent African fiction and literary culture.

Monthly Newsletter!

Subscribe for African literature news, and receive a free copy of our
"Guide to African Novels."

Archives

Watch This Poetry Dance Film of Kayo Chingonyi’s “Kumukanda”

kayo chingonyi - the guardian

Zambian poet Kayo Chingonyi’s first full-length collection, Kumukanda, is receiving praise. The Guardian has hailed its “lyrical elegance” and “many […]

Photos | Nommo Awards 2017: How Africa’s First Ever Speculative Fiction Awards Ceremony Happened

IMG_7063

The announcement of the winners of the inaugural Nommo Awards took place at the ongoing 2017 Ake Arts and Book […]

Goodreads Awards 2017: Vote Chimamanda Adichie’s “Dear Ijeawele” and Nnedi Okorafor’s “Home” in the Final Round

Nnedi-Okorafor BELLA NAIJA

Earlier this month we announced the online voting for Goodreads’ 2017 awards. The first round saw nominations for four authors having massively […]

#AkeFest2017 | Follow Brittle Paper’s Coverage of Ake Arts and Book Festival

ake festival (1)

  Ake Arts and Book Festival is happening in Abeokuta, Nigeria—has been happening since 14 November, to end on 18 […]

Opportunity for Writers and Visual Artists | Apply for the 2017 Artists in Residency Programme

Applications are open for the 2017 Artists in Residency (AIR) programme, an initiative of Africa Centre “seeking high calibre African artists, in […]

South African Literary Awards 2017: All the Winners

The winners of the 2017 South African Literary Awards have been announced. Here they are, with excerpts from their citations. […]

Thanks for signing up!

Never miss out on new posts. Subscribe to a digest, too:

No thanks, I only want the monthly newsletter.