Ngozi Dora Ulogu, Christiana Obiageli Udogu


Okigbo's poetry gives expression to personal experiences of man, the emotions and impulses and the resultant effects of elusive hope and a rejected self- striving to redeem its crushed pieces. Thus the experience of pain, despair and inner hurt described as anguish majorly dot the lines of Okigbo's poetry, especially, in his selection of poetry 'Labyrinth, incorporating “Passage''. The feelings of despair and anguish are in the domain of psychoanalysis stemming from the inner recesses of the individual. The experiences manifest as reminiscences which are perceived as ''bittersweet'' which is a feeling of both pleasure and pain. Every soul, therefore, is a pilgrim in the world and suffers the anguish of existence which issues out of the personal experiences of alienation from the realities surrounding oneself and from society. This paper is a literary study of Okigbo's poetic contents as personal experiences and reminiscences of his life. The essay explores the motivations of anguish, loneliness, and despair as psychoanalytic tools of analysis of the poems. Specifically, nostalgia, feelings of pleasure and sadness are identified as the driving impetus and impulses in the poetic persona's psyche. These metaphors demonstrate the strivings and elusiveness of perfection in human existence.


Keywords: Poetry, psychoanalysis, anguish, nostalgia, reminiscences.

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