the memory of love//aminatta forna

gaining inspiration and courage from sierra leonean aminatta forna's the memory of love, which recently won the commonwealth prize. forna's novel competed against a smattering of nigerian- and south african-authored works (including helon habila's oil on water) for this most prestigious award.

though clearly biased, i truly believe that african writers--primarily african women writers--will inherit the earth. as a writer, i have my own stake in this; though i'm equally humbled, inspired, and emboldened by the work of so many others, particularly those who deal with this slippery matter of love. i study them well.

you can read the entire first chapter here. and find out more about the book and author here. --AL.

"I heard a song, a morning as I walked to college. It came to me across the radio playing on a stall I passed. A song from far away, about a lost love. At least so I imagined, I didn’t understand the words, only the melody. But in the low notes I could hear the loss this man had suffered. And in the high notes I understood too that it was a song about something that could never be. I had not wept in years. But I did, there and then, on the side of a dusty street, surrounded by strangers. The melody stayed with me for years.

This is how it is when you glimpse a woman for the first time, a woman you know you could love. People are wrong when they talk of love at first sight. It is neither love nor lust. No. As she walks away from you, what you feel is loss. A premonition of loss."

-- from Aminatta Forna's The Memory of Love


{ Myne Whitman } | June 2, 2011 at 12:12 AM said...

I got my copy of this yesterday and look forward to jumping in when done with my current read.

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