March 2009

stormy-sky-at-the-village The rains came abruptly, with little warning, just as darkness was settling in on Friday evening. The rains disturbed the wake keeping by keeping most of the villagers in their homes. A power much larger than the simple plans of man dictated that only the closest family members and the most committed supporters would show up that night.

My wife and I had travelled to her home village to take part in the funeral celebrations for the late ɔkyeamehene (chief linguist). This was a long awaited event – the man died more than six months ago, but due to circumstances relating to his high ranking position in the Traditional Council, his funeral had been delayed until this weekend. All of the conditions laid out by tradition had finally been met; all of the arrangements had been made; the rains were a humbling reminder of man’s limitations.

Rather than being distressed by the turn of events, we gave thanks because we knew that these rains would then signal an all clear for the much more important proceedings which would take place the following day. Once again, we could see the wisdom of that higher power, and we privately expressed our gratitude. Life is abundant with such wisdom, if only we are open to receive it.


Heads up, Folks!

It is hot off the press!! African Rainbow Round the Sun. Yes, my collection of poems has been published. It is an exciting time for me – my chance to share some of my writing with the the world in book form. After recieving a lot of encouragement from our friend,  Poet/Writer Janet Riehl (, I took the plunge and selected poems which represent my interpretation of changes which have been happening in Ghana over the past 37 years since I first stepped foot here.

African Rainbow Round the Sun is a modest effort with 16 poems in the collection, all but one written the past five years. They are my response to the changes that I have seen in Ghana caused by the forces of globalization and global warming. No one can be immune to these changes, and here in Ghana society copes by adapting as best as it is able. The results are demonstrative of the way in which cultures evolve – some effects are positive while others are quite destructive, representing the yin and the yang of universal forces.

There is no room for sentimentality and if we see changes that we don’t like then it is up to each of us to do something about it. It is easy to be distracted by our day to day activities of providing basic necessities  as a result, we do not see the bigger picture – we don’t take the actions that are needed in order to influence changes in more positive ways.

It is my hope that the poems in this collection along with the accompanying end notes may encourage readers to pause for a moment and consider their own surroundings. This applies to readers throughout the world, whether they be here in Africa or elsewhere. Remember – we are all in this together.

Stay tuned – the book is now available to be sent out by airmail from Ghana. Arrangements are in the works to enable online ordering and payment.