Poetry in Motion is a collection of narrative poetry composed by Mulumba Ivan Matthias that takes us , by section, through “Rhythm and Rhymes” to view “Cakes and Candles” while puzzling out the “Riddles of Fortune” and experience the the pain and pleasure of “Thorns and Roses” before coming to “The Gospel Truth”.
It is a journey through the reflections and observations of a number of voices.
The all seeing witness at a cathedral(Groans from the Cathedral), the weary traveller(A Traveller’s Thought), the randy teenager(Prayer before Sosh), a chorus of prostitutes(Nation Builders), a daughter of a prostitute(Nina’s story), a man who has fallen on hard times (Lamentations) and an overly formal messenger(The Message) make themselves heard as does a young suitor(Doubts)and a despairing citizen(1986). These voices are side by side with those reflecting on religious themes in poems like Sheaf of Wheat, Prophecy, and Journey of the Messiah.
It is this blend of the grit of survival (Angel in the Gloom), nostalgia (Home) and the overtly political (My Palestine) and the cleverly descriptive (Kampala Road) that make the sights of this poetic journey so diverse.
What would count for a bump in the road is the lack of footnotes for terms like “sosh”, “Nalubale” and “Mutanzige” that may need to be explained to readers unfamiliar with the poet’s immediate context. Poetry in Motion still retains its manifold voices and leaves the impression of an ambitious, colourful and far reaching first collection of poetry. An enterprising first. Where will this motion take us next?