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Poetry Podcast: collaborative poem by Kama La Mackerel, Athol Williams and Gitan Djeli

Posted on 12/04/2021
By Commonwealth Foundation

This poem was written as a creative collaboration between Kama La Mackerel, Athol Williams and Gitan Djeli.

Kama La Mackerel is a Montreal-based Mauritian-Canadian multi-disciplinary artist, educator, writer, community-arts facilitator and literary translator who works within and across performance, photography, installations, textiles, digital art and literature. 

Kama’s work is grounded in the exploration of justice, love, healing, decoloniality, hybridity, cosmopolitanism and self- and collective-empowerment. They believe that aesthetic practices have the power to build resilience and act as resistance to the status quo, thereby enacting an anticolonial praxis through cultural production.

Kama has exhibited and performed their work internationally and their writing in English, French and Kreol has appeared in publications both online and in print. ZOM-FAM, their debut poetry collection published by Metonymy Press was named a CBC Best Poetry Book and a Globe and Mail Best Debut Book, and was shortlisted for the QWF Concordia University First Book Award. // @KamaLaMackerel



by Kama La Mackerel, Gitan Djeli and Athol Williams 

On the writing experience

Athol Williams
'There was a magic to writing in partnership with other writers … I would send a few lines and they’d return magically as more lines, richer, more colourful. There was a surrendering to the visions and insights of my fellow writers, an appreciation of their lines that went along with my appreciation of who they were.'
Athol Williams
Gitan Djeli
'A most nurturing creative collaboration with Athol and Kama. The process of creating a piece together was an intense one. We initially wrote individual pieces after a series of shared thoughts on our relationship with the ocean, the journey of diaspora and the connection to the different motherlands we inhabit as descendants of indenture. The final poem was a careful arrangement of different parts of each piece weaved together to have our voices interacting with each other. I enjoyed every moment of the journey. Thank you.'
Gitan Djeli