Wednesday, 4 May 2011
after the rain
Though the rain was pelting the shutters early this morning and wind whipped the garden and trees, I curled up smiling under the covers. No angst, just delight. Wasafiri, a distinguished literary journal publishing writers I adore, has after a year or so of waiting, word cuts, more waiting, approval by the achingly intimidating Board (Ngugi wa Thiong'o, Ondaatje, Gordimer) finally recommended my story 'Infection' for publication!
I am more than thrilled. I was expecting the usual close-to-the-mark-but-not-for-us. But this, approval by the gods!
I don't know when it is coming out, but surely I will be renewing my subscription. (I also have 3 short stories coming out in The View from Here this month. Hoping to see them soon.)
The best is that 'Infection' was written several years ago, it is heavy with Ghanaian heat, with illness, with contrast and deep pain. It all started from the postcard of the Princestown fort I have framed over my bed, an old concrete bastion on the rough road to Cape Coast. Not a slave castle like Elmina and Cape Coast, but still a disturbing and redolent sign of the country's mottled colonial past. In the story the protagonist, Eugene, comes back from London to reckon with a domineering mother and a dying half-sister, 'from the world of glass to the world of tin.. a man with an elaborate, undeserved education.. '
How far away are those days of palms and saltiness. I still see us driving along the plains and through the hot tin villages, plantain on tables for sale, smoked grasscutters, Winneba pineapples, the ragged sea a breath away.