Tuesday, June 14, 2005

About Togane's Official Website

Poet Togane

Togane.org is the home of Prof. Mohamud Siad Togane’s work including poetry, articles, and speeches in text, audio and video.

“A native of Somalia and a 1969 graduate of Eastern Mennonite College, poet Togane is a rare breed of believer, an amalgam of many roots and influences. His urgent and sometimes profane essays - many of them cast as long polemical poems - address political and social issues that remain volatile for Somalis and other Africans. Clannism, political corruption and religion are frequent topics when Togane addresses his countrymen.”

Mohamud Siad Togane has been living in Canada since 1973. He has became a Canadian citizen in 1978 and now resides in Quebec.

Togane’s works include: The bottle and the Bushman: Poems of the Prodical (1986), Eternal Conversations (2003), Fifty years, fifty stories (2003), Bridges: Literature Across Cultures ( 1994) Quebec Suite: Poems for and about Quebec (1995) Togane has also written articles for several newspapers and magazine including The Globe and Mail, Zymergy: A Literary Montreal Magazine, African Art (University of California) and AfricanCanadian.

He has also taught and lectured at universities of Waterloo, Hamburg, Concordia , Rutgers, McGill, and Toronto.

Togane’s new book—News from Home will be published this Spring.

Read more at Prof. Togane's official webiste.

"Operation Freedom"

Poet Togane

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Major combat operations have ended in cyberspace. In the battle to free Togane from tyranny, Said Yussuf of Somalia Online, and the coalition of the willing have prevailed.

Congratulations to M.S. Togane. And the world is now fortunate to welcome Togane.org.
I cannot imagine anyone having done a better job in a shorter time than Said did. He’s truly a remarkable man. I’m impressed, happy and proud to see the fruition of an idea that started over a cup of tea and a cigarette.

I cannot say enough about Said and his ability to get the job done in an incredible time frame and top it off with style.

Togane, you are now the proud owner of a brand new 5 acre lot in cyberspace. Let no one ever dictate again when, what or where you can publish your work.

A celebration is due.

Thank you all.

Omer Ofleh Operation Freedom Houston, Texas USA

Read more at Poet Togane's official website.

Monday, June 13, 2005

Words of a Somali Poet on Montreal Buses

ANNE SUTHERLAND asutherland@thegazette.canwest.com ) - The Gazette

Friday, April 23, 2004 --- When poet Mohamud Siad Togane went back in 1992 to visit Mogadishu, Somalia, the city of his birth, he was shot at four times. What a different reception he has received in his adopted home, Montreal: His poetry is now posted on buses crisscrossing the city.

“I have discovered that Montreal is a city that is very kind to its poets,” he said yesterday.
Togane is one of 20 Montreal poets whose work will be featured in Poetry in Motion. The poems will be mounted on special panels inside 800 Montreal Transit Corp. buses until May 22.
“People think art is reserved for the elite and is unaccessible,” said Carolyn Marie Souaid, a poet and teacher. “Putting poems on the bus is a good way to return the arts to the community where they grew.”

Poetry in Motion coincides with national poetry month and was conceived by Souaid and fellow poet and teacher Endre Farkas, in conjunction with the Blue Metropolis International Literary Festival of Montreal, which took place this month.

“All of the artists donated their works,” Farkas said. “It may not be money (the poets get) but it is exposure.”

The project was funded by a $6,000 grant from the Montreal Arts Council and corporate donations.

The works of 10 French poets and 10 English poets are featured and on each bus, one poem will be in French and one in English.

The English is the same size as the French, thanks to a provision in the provincial language law exempting cultural events.

Emile Martel, winner of the Governor-General’s Prize for poetry in 1995, said he is an enthusiastic participant in Poetry in Motion.

“There’s no way you can say no to being read,” Martel said.

Read the entire article at Prof. Togane's official website.

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