Black love poetry contains the poetry of notable African writers

Welcome to my final page on black love poetry. We are taking a look at various examples of how indigenous African poets have contributed to our genre. I have four more examples for you to conclude what has been a most stimulating journey, linking the love verses of Black people across two continents, from the New World to the Oldest - Mother Africa herself.

In keeping with this African theme, my next selection is black love poetry in praise of the vast imposing continent itself. Dear Africa is the contribution of Michael Deo-Anang:

Dear Africa

Awake, thou sleeping heart!

Awake, and kiss

The love-lorn brow

Of this ebon lass,

Dear Africa.

Whose virgin charms

Ensnare the love-lit hearts

Of venturing youth

From other lands.

Awake, sweet Africa

Demands thy love.

Thou sleeping heart!

When the all-summer sun

Paints the leafy boughs

With golden rays,

Know then, thou sleeping heart,

Dear Africa stands

Knocking at thy door.

Andrene Bonner contributes this next example of black love poetry, which admires the gusto and larger-than-life image of the market woman. An ubiquitous sight in African traditional market places, familiar enough to all Africans:

One Special Market Woman

She spreads her legs wide open--cuddle bankra,

Frock falls graceful between her thunder thighs.

Breasts round like one big papaya--hides her secrets

Boat-neck cotton blouse makes her cleavage look divine.

She smells like Benjamin’s rose water

Dark and soft and smooth as Indian silk

Eyes like purple ripe star apples

Seen the world and many moons from where she sits.

Her head is crowned with bright bandana

Sweet sap leaf on forehead keeps her pressure down.

One lead pencil stuck behind her right ear,

Scratch down poor peoples debt from year to year.

Lips wide like gramma yesterday pudding pan

Makes her laughter more resonant— more infectious.

“Don’t touch me tomato if you nah buy,

Stop feel up feel up mi mango—you keep yuh small change!”

Here is A Call by George Awoonor-Williams(b.1935) also known as Kofi Awoonor. He is a reknown Ghanaian poet and author, whose work combines the poetic traditions of his native Ewe people and contemporary and religious symbolism to depict Africa:

A Call

She did not call me by name

Not by the name my mother gave me

She called me by another name

A word

I have not heard it before

Yet I knew it was me.

Will you come under the cashew tree beside the

cemetery? I know no cashew tree beside the


No, I don't.

Yet I will go.

Perhaps a revelation awaits me

Have they discovered the coloured cowrie?

Or the specific herbs that will conjure

They perhaps have found the lost wanderer

I went after her.

She stood still beneath the cashew

And spoke not a word.

My final example of black love poetry from Africa is by Okogbule Wonodi, suitably entitled Native:


Your eyes toe-set

thumb my nerves

as you weave

your being into frenzy;

and your tongue,

weaving a song,

painting the scenes

I sit toe-dancing

Then you pull

those eyelids over

as you bend

downwards to dance

yourself into goddess;

And your waist,

swinging to rhythm,

answering the drum

as I look, headshaking.

Then light fades,

those scenes fly

you stretch

your being, panting,

and your mouth,

muttering my name,

stifling my nerves

as I end my verse!

(Dedicated to Miss Eunice Akaninwa and the village girls who do the dance I know well. 21:1:63)

Black love poetry from Africa is pungent and earthy in keeping with its environment. The poet/statesman Leopold Senghor was very familiar with its essence. As a postscript to the page, let us bring him back once again for a last word...

"My empire is that of Love, for I am weak for you, woman, / Foreigner with clear eyes, lips of cinnamon apple, / And a sex like a burning bush / For I am both sides of a double door, the binary rhythm of space / And the third beat, I am the movement of drums, / The strength of future Africa."

Thank you dear reader for lasting the course of our rather exotic journey!

P.S. Its not quite the end of my page on Black Love Poetry from Africa! To paraphrase Pliny,There is always something new from Africa. Dear reader, click the link below:

New African Black Love Poetry

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