It was the dance of the Poets, on April 3, 2021 at the library of the cultural center Blaise Senghor of Dakar the Senegalese capital. Three big names in poetry were awarded and an encouragement prize was awarded to a fourth lover of words.
In Senegal, the land of the late poet Léopold Sédar Senghor but also of the Egyptian historian Cheikh Anta Diop, emotion was at its height. The award ceremony took place on Friday 3 April at the library of the Blaise Senghor Cultural Centre in Dakar. Three winners were awarded and the fourth received an incentive award.
The poet Mouhamed NGuirane is ranked at the head of the podium, he got the 1st prize of the contest, with his text “Symmetrical mosaics”, Moussa Gueye came 2nd with his text “Mother Nature”, Pathé Dieye marks his presence in the 3rd place with his unpublished text “In Transe-piration” and finally, Birane Sène received the prize of encouragement with her text “Au début: la rose et ses épines”. Poetry texts as dense as each other where the authors showed their writing talent that seduces the jury.
Before the presentation of this prestigious award, a call for papers was launched in October 2020 to be closed on 1 January 2021. Some 50 texts were received and the steering committee selected 41 texts that rigorously complied with the selection criteria. Then, the jury composed of 9 members and chaired by Fatimata Diallo Ba, the renowned writer and professor of classics retained 10 texts, of which only 3 will be laureates at the end of the final selection phase. All the manuscripts were selected according to their quality, in particular the mastery of the language used to write the text, the density of the poetic language and the originality of the text that was submitted.
As a reminder, the poetry contest “Ibrahima Sall Prize” is initiated by the Collective “Let’s Talk Poetry”, which is a group of young authors passionate about literature in general and poetry in particular. Two anthologies in poetry “De cris et d’encre” in 2018 and “Élégies des semeurs d’Afrique” were produced by the Collective and published by Maitres du jeu Editions in 2018. To go further in their approach, they decided to set up a poetry contest. Their objective: To pay tribute to the brilliant poet Ibrahima Sall, still unknown to the general public, whose poetic work is immense; Encourage writing in Senegal and make new feathers emerge and allow young Senegalese to have the opportunity to have editorial accompaniment.
This year 2021 marks the starting point of the first edition of the “Ibrahima Sall Prize” of the “Let’s Talk Poetry” Collective. The next edition will take place in 2022.