With liquid eyes flood my soul
That I may be able to discern
Not only what is good
But what is excellent
The verse above by Mark Nwagwu, unlocks the depths of a highly philosophical piece of work. My Eye Dances is a sequel to Forever Chimes. The author “describes the life and times of Chief Akadike Okeosisi of Okeosisi, the great-grandfather of Chioma (the main character of My Eyes Dance), from her birth to her graduation from Georgetown University, Washington, DC, USA.”
In a prior review of the precursor of My Eye Dance, my pen wrote that:
Forever Chimes is a voyage into the lineage of Akadike of Okosisi through his son Maduka to his granddaughter – Onyebuchi and down to his great granddaughter – Chioma. Akadike’s great granddaughter takes on the family tradition, a personification of all that her grandfather stands for. It is a novel that treats history, not in the conventional way which African tradition is built upon. As a matter of fact, Akadike a man of valour, a High Chief of Okosisi, not only interacted with the colonial masters but actually assisted the Resident in Okoko – Mr Author Greenfield to write a book about the history of his town. Akadike’s wisdom not only shines through the book but also his passions, especially his tendency to get easily offended. The intricate web of both the philosophical and supernatural finds its embodiment in his life.
I had begged Nwagwu for a sequel, and he gladly gave me one. He has fulfilled a promise.
Charles Nnolim in his foreword to the novel attests that:
My Eye Dance is a novel of character and a novel of ideas. The character around whom most of the action accretes is Chioma Ijeoma, and the ideas surrounding most of the themes are about African ancestor worship and its attendant idea of totemism.
Chioma…becomes the carrier of the ancestral genes by receiving an ancestral ‘walking stick’ that has a mind of its own and tries to influence Chioma’s actions at important moments of her life. Chioma led a life of exceptional virtue and is everything one admires in a human being. She is an artist par excellence, a painter, a philosopher, a brilliant academic, and her celibate life in Opus Dei, influences for the better many followers…she is in every way a saint if we consider the adage that a saint is a person who does the ordinary things in life extraordinarily well.
A more detailed review of this book will soon be hoisted on this blog.