samarpan hosts: Lakshmi Iyer and Teji Sethi Dedication: To the memory of a dear friend and a brilliant poet, Adjei Agyei-Baah who left us suddenly on 18th December 2023.
Adjei Agyei-Baah Adjei Agyei-Baah (born Eric Adjei Baah, June 29, 1977, Kumasi, Ashanti Region, Ghana), lecturer, translator, editor, and haiku poet. He is currently a PhD candidate in English at the Division of Education, University of Waikato, New Zealand. He is the co-founder of Africa Haiku Network, Poetry Foundation Ghana, and The Mamba, Africa’s first haiku journal. Agyei-Baah’s work won recognition in the Japan–Russia Haiku Contest in 2014, received The Heron’s Nest Award (best haiku of issue) in 2016, been shortlisted for the World Haiku Club’s R. H. Blyth Award in 2019, and anthologized in Kala Ramesh’s Naad Anunaad: An Anthology of Contemporary World Haiku (2016).
His debut haiku collection, Afriku (2016), was commended by Nigerian Nobel Prize–winner Wole Soyinka. His fourth book, Piece of My Fart (2018) is the first senryu collection from Africa. Agyei-Baah is the primary author of the four Haikupedia articles about African haiku; he lives in Kumasi, Ghana. Bio taken from Haikupedia Triveni Haikai India salutes Adjei who was a great friend, poet and human being, who visited this earth briefly, leaving behind a wealth of poetry and goodwill.
passing on an old hat
to a scarecrow
I have been interacting with Adjei since 2010 or so, when he was a budding haiku poet.
He used to tell me many times that he shared the passion to popularise haiku in his country the way I was working towards spreading the joy of haiku in India. Which he did hugely.
I even invited him to one of our Triveni Utsavs, which he promised he would, one day.
Dear members, please add your condolence messages below.
Please read the conversations with Adjei and pray his soul rests in peace.
From Teji: Thank you, Kala for carving out this soulful space for poets who leave us with their poetry for times till we become one with them. Thank you, Lakshmi, for this gesture and including me in this. SAMARPAN, sam + arpan. Samast is all and Arpan an offering. What better can we offer a poet than reminiscing his body of work and the impact it left on us as poets.
I did not have the chance to interact much with Adjei, except when he sent a congratulatory mail to me about my winning haiku in the Africa Haiku Prize 2022. I knew him as a fine haiku poet and read his work on Instagram. The latest I saw was a shahai posted by him and it was stunning! The way he depicted the movement in haiku through the photo he used was breathtakingly beautiful. Since I have a special space in my heart for artwork and haiga, posting his latest below.