Zimbabwean poet Togara Muzanenhamo published a new collection of poetry on October 28th, 2021. The collection is titled Virga and was published by Carcanet Press.
The title of the collection is a meteorology term that describes a visible streak or shaft of water falling from a cloud that evaporates or sublimates before reaching the ground. Virga is a collection of poetry that covers a variety of historical events, all over the world, connected by the weather. Ultimately, these poems connect to themes about global change, history, and human connection. The Times Literary Supplement writes that “Muzanenhamo has a rare gift and should be admired for the risks he takes, which have enabled him to write unusual, moving and yet understated poems about conflict, love and work.”
Read a part of the publishers description below.
“Set in the twentieth century, Virga features historical events woven together by the weather. From the spiritual silence of a sundog during the 1911 Japanese Antarctic Expedition, to the 1921 World Championship chess matches in the Cuban heat, to the final hours of a young Bavarian mountaineer in the Bernese Alps in 1936, and strange white clouds decimating whole villages in northern Cameroon in 1986—the poems capture stories of a rapidly evolving century beneath an ancient, fragile sky. The title relates to the meteorological phenomenon in which a column, shaft, or band of rain or snow is seen falling from a cloud but never reaching the earth— evaporating before touchdown. Like Gumiguru, which has so much to do with weather, Virga continues with it, its impact on our daily lives. But, here, his geography broadens out to include wider worlds and different histories artfully strung together by the poet’s fascination with the elements.”
Togara Muzanenhamo in a poet and journalist. He was born to Zimbabwean parents in Zambia. He was raised in Zimbabwe later studied in The Hague and Paris. His journalism work has appeared in magazines in Europe, South Africa and Zimbabwe. He has published three collections of poetry, Spirit Brides (2006), Gumiguru (2014), and now Virga. He has been shortlisted for the Jerwood Alderburgh First Collection Prize and the Glenna Luschei Prize for African Poetry.
BUY Virga: Amazon