Adeola Oke is a creative writer, a poet and storyteller. Recently, she published a poem anthology, Live Each Day With A Poem ( LEDWAP ) which can be downloaded for free. You can read my speech at her ebook launch: Leveraging social media to build a solid career.Written below is a recap of my interview with her at Zikoko Student Community.
Thank you Adeola Oke for granting this interview and congratulations once again on your new book.
Thank you very much. It’s my pleasure.
I know a lot of writers who shun away from poetry because they find it difficult to write. How did you get started as a poet?
Well, I never saw my self as a poet when I started writing. I only scribble whatever comes to my head.😀 But somehow, I got interested in poems I used when in secondary school for my WAEC. Anytime I read lyrics from any of the poems, I was always enchanted by the beauty it speaks. And then I started with articles from there I started writing poems though not perfect, but as time goes on I start to become perfect in the area.
Practice truly makes perfect. Each poems in LEDWAP written in a day. How do you poems develop? Can you guide us through the stages of a poem?
Okay. I’m still learning to become better though. But then poetry can come in whatever form. It could be a narrative poem(which I love) For me, poetry is; capture a message in your mind, have a topic, make research: check out other people’s work relating to the message and topic you have in mind. Use the figure of speech: it brightens the poem a lot and gives it life. Finally, let your poem come in stanzas.
Who are your favorite living poets?
Living poets. Errr😅. Wole Soyinka, my tutor Emmanuel Dairo and Tolu Akinyemi.
I found myself in a place I never imagined” is a line from your poem – Teen-ager which I find to be passionate as it is my favorite.Where was that and how were you able to break free?
Don’t mind me😅😅 The place I found my self was actually a good place. But to me then, it was not where I ever planned to be. I went to a Polytechnic and I was so ashamed of my self!😅 I lived two years of my life in cries, regrets and why me Lord Why would you allow me to come here. But then, now I realised it’s a huge blessing! I faced my studies and i made excellent grades in school. I focused on the good part and thrived!
And you’re still thriving. Why the shame tho?
Your question ehn😃 Yes! I am thriving! I’m getting better each day! And I thank God for growth.
The shame? Firstly, I wasn’t matured to know that there is a place of PROCESS in everything, so I thought God had done something bad for making me to go to a Polytechnic while all my siblings went to a University. I never knew God works in diverse ways and that His plan for each and everyone is different and unique. Secondly, I was myopic. Some people are even working to get into a Polytechnic but I was there complaining and asking God unnecessary questions. Thirdly, I was ashamed because I felt I am ‘brilliant’ and I deserve the best.😂 But God wasn’t looking at it that way… It’s a long thing.
True. We all have to make the best use of our knowledge whether gotten from Polytechnic, University or College of Education. This brings me to your opinion about teenage years being a time of self discovery and purpose which I totally agree to. How can teenagers find purpose? What do you say to people who feel purposeful towards more than one cause?
Exactly! The thing is, purpose is not what we think it is. I do say purpose is a stem of a tree and the branches on the tree and the many ways you can fulfil purpose. Being a Doctor or a Lawyer is just one way a purpose can be fulfilled. Tell me if there is no stem, will there be any branches at all? No, never! You have to have a purpose (stem) before you can discover the various means you can achieve them( branches).
Read and turn hurts into healing for others. Thirdly, cultivate awe, gratitude, and altruism. Fourthly, listen to what people appreciate about you. (Very important) Find and build a community and tell your story. These basic things will help you identify and discover your purpose and most importantly PRAYERS!
People who feels purposeful towards more than one thing? Hehe A purpose may be ‘making people smile and happy’ ‘helping abused children’ that is purpose. Purpose is one central thing. It’s not scattered. Everything you do is pointing at that one thing which is your purpose. Meaning, you can have a purpose, then various means to achieving them.
Thank you so much Adeola Oke. It has been an insightful conversation so far. More groundbreaking initiatives.
Adeola Oke is the Father’s daughter passionate about painting pictures with words to improve all facet of human life. She is a creative writer, a poet and a storyteller. Author of Live Each Day With A Poem (LEDWAP) Anthology. She blogs at dellar3tes, a blog having a positive influence on people through its various contents. Adeola’s writing has featured in a few magazines and writing platforms, like Spur Nation Magazine, Teens with a Difference International Magazine, Sparkle Writers Hub, ZenPens. She is currently the head of content creators at Precious Love Foundation, a charity based organization working towards establishing the SDGs.