Sudan: Wad Almakki _ the icon of Sudanese poetry

Mohammed Almakki Ibrahim, the great Sudanese poet and emblematic figure of the Sudanese cultural scene, was honored last June by the Abdulkarim Cultural Center (in Omdurman) for his achievements and contributions to national literature.

The celebration includes many speeches about the poet and his poems, singing his songs, in addition to some papers that showcased his amazing literary prose.

Almakki, also known as (Wad Almakki), was born in El-Obid, North Kordfan in 1939, he obtained his BA in Law from the University of Khartoum and an MA in Political Science from the Sorbonne. He is a former diplomat and a citizen of the world who manages to find his place in various countries and cultures. According to Lemya Shammat (Sudanese critic and novelist), he is best known for his multidimensional creative trajectory as a writer, essayist, critic, translator, political analyst and activist.

His masterpiece October Song is one of the best revolutionary poems in the history of Sudan, sung by the great Sudanese singer Mohammed Wardi:

Your name, synonymous with triumph,

blooms in people’s hearts,

inject faith and auspiciousness;

a scarf wrapped around the jungle and the desert,

and a torch in our hands, and a weapon.

Armed with October,

We won’t flinch; won’t back down an inch

His publications include four collections of poetry, several books, and hundreds of essays and articles. El-Makki was among the pioneers of the literary and intellectual current “The Bush and the Desert”, whose main question and quest was how to creatively realize an idiosyncratic and uniquely Sudanese artistic expression.

Mohammed Almakki assumes that Sudan is rich because of its diversity, Arabic culture, African characteristics and the dialects we speak. This concept is clear in his poems which became very famous for this unique beauty to show our own identity, he said:

I’m just a drop of your nectar

You are the orange.

Your thighs are overflowing with Khilassi offspring

You’re part nigger

Partly Arabic – and of course,

Some of my words before the Lord

Wad Almakki wrote about love, Sudanese national characteristics and Islamic culture, he can reflect all his authentic ideas like drops of water gathering to fill the ocean:

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