Gabriel Okara, a prize-winning author whose literary career spans six decades, is rightly hailed as the elder statesman of Nigerian literature. The first Modernist poet of anglophone Africa, he is best known for The Fisherman’s Invocation (1978), The Dreamer, His Vision (2005), and for his early experimental novel, The Voice (1964).
Arranged in six sections, Gabriel Okara: Collected Poems includes the poet’s earliest lyric verse along with poems written in response to Nigeria’s war years; literary tributes and elegies to fellow poets, activists, and loved ones long dead; and recent dramatic and narrative poems. The introduction by Brenda Marie Osbey contextualizes Okara’s work in the history of Nigerian, African, and English language literatures. Gabriel Okara: Collected Poems is at once a treasure for those long in search of a single authoritative edition and a revelation and timely introduction for readers new to the work of one of Africa’s most revered poets.