Story Moja literary fest kicks off Friday

Acclaimed American poet and Pulitzer Prize winner Yusef Komunyakaa is in Nairobi for the three-day Story Moja Hay Festival that kicks off on Friday.

Yusef will hold a poetry master class with Kenyan poet Njeri Wangari and take part in a panel discussion entitled “Poets converse and perform” alongside Keguro Macharia and Sitawa Namwale.

Story-Moja is East Africa’s largest international literary festival that seeks to celebrate writing, ideas and contemporary culture through workshops, live discussions and presentations.

This year’s event will be held at the Railway Sports Ground in the CBD.

Yusef won both the Pulitzer Prize and the Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award for his collection, “Neon Vernacular: New and Selected Poems” in 1994.

A New York Times critic likens his poetry to that of Wordsworth.  He has taught poetry at the university level, and he is also Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets.

Also featuring at this year’s event are Booker Prize winner Ben Okri, British Book Award winner-Hari Kunzru, world-renowned travel writer Peter Moore and children’s illustrator Stian Hole.

Kenyan will be ably represented by Chris Hart, Chris Limo, Muthoni Muchemi and poet Ngwatilo Mawiyoo.

More than 6,000 people attended last year’s festival and organisers expect to surpass the number this weekend.

The festival has been organized by Storymoja Publishers in conjunction with the American Embassy, the Hay Festival UK and the British Council.

Entrance will set you back by Sh500.

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