Picking Up the Pieces is an anthology of 50 poems themed on a 22-year dictatorship of Gambia?s former president and as well as the small West African country?s current situation. From poems that preach peace to prevail in the land tagged with a broad smile to poems denouncing tribalism to those pointing out signs of dictatorial tendencies within the current government. One of the poems titled The Flautist for instance likened the start to finish of the former president?s regime to a flute performer whose tunes were adored by people at first but started to receive hate from the same people later. The flautist tunes became monotonous and aggressive thereby forcing the listeners and dancers of his tune to react in the negative as they asked him to stop. Similar can also be said of the poem that followed called Chameleon that further shows the vision and or plans the then chairman of a provisional ruling council intended to accomplish only to become a despot later?mistreating his people. These poetry collections not only tell of the past that has derailed the country?s growth, but it also laid bare the current political and socio-economic realities confronting the new dispensation. There are poems decrying Gambia?s continuous stay of penury as she relies on aid and grants from the West and other countries abroad in order to survive. Aside from the lamentations, this anthology highlights natural resources Gambia is endowed with, which with the right leadership, could transform the small West Africa nation into a developed one.
Picking Up the Pieces - Dust Jacket
- Momodou Jarju