Celebrated Malawian poet Qubaniso Q. Malewezi has said poets in the country need to harness their potential and put poetry to better use.
“We are poets because we’ve issues,” said Malewezi after a performance at Mzuzu University (Mzuni) Saturday.
He added: “And we need to bring the issues up through performances. Poetry can be gainful. We can use it in advertising, postcards, fashion, pillows and so on.”
Malewezi performed under the banner of Project Project! – a non-governmental organization that is working on helping budding poets in the country’s institutions of higher learning maximize their potentials through performance poetry.
Some of the notable names that performed before a sizeable audience include Mzuzu-based lawyer Tadala Tembo, 2012 FMB Short Story Award winner Pius Nyondo and 20 year old Polytechnic student Jedediah (real name Chisomo Masambuka) – currently part of Malewezi’s team of four poets.
Malewezi took to stage amid applause from the audience, and his turn marked the climax of the fest. He dished out a number of power packed pieces that were clearly rich in both form and content.
His work was particularly outstanding in theme, as it tackled, at great depth, a number of social ills such as economic exploitation, abuse of power and injustice, which constantly seemed like his flagship theme running through the veins of his poetry.
Malewezi, who has performed in Zimbabwe and England, among many places, hours before performing held a workshop where he drilled poets and other writers at the institution in the poetry writing process.