PFOS WEEKLY INTERVIEW With, Nana Arhin Tsiwah 


An exclusive interview with Nana Arhin Tsiwah
Date: 27th August, 2016
Host: PFOS Zulfaw
Co-host: PFOS Tiyumba Salim
Production crew: PFOS Interviewers Unit
Venue: PFOS FAMILY(PFOS official WhatsApp platform)
Time: 8-9:30pm

(1). Tell us something brief about yourself.
— Nana Arhin Tsiwah is a regular Ghanaian village boy who is an undergraduate student of the University of Cape Coast, Ghana.

(2). Whats the meaning of your pen name and why that pen name?
— I used to have a pen name, The Village Thinker, but it has grown beyond me. It has gained a lot of still water for reflection and a refocus into the true origin of a regular Ghanaian child.

(3). Sir, what is poetry?
— Poetry is poetry; we cannot dilute its potencies. It is what defines a man, his soul, spirit and spermatozoa or metra. As an African, poetry is culture— a subsidiary of a refined witty Proverbial African intellectualism.

(4). Who is a poet…?
— A poet is sperm made from clay and adorned with spiritual givings. He is a misfit; an obstinate reading society and rewriting society in a constrictive way. The African poet, however, is the seed of a complex weaver and master, Kweku Ananse— just like the African storyteller.

(5). Is there something called poetic language? How does one get It?
— Poetic language is poetic language. It’s the the poet’s language. Unlike prose/drama which is a sprout of enroads, poetic language comes with the poet’s pizzazz to weave words in a manner that represents a part of his internal creative juices.

(5) What are the good ingredients of a poem? How will “one” get them?
— For me, as a rebellious poet, every poem is as good as its creator; as beautiful as the soul that forged it. There is however, a true poem, which has its own smell, taste and feel— and perhaps it’s spirituality. Getting these ingredients has no one particular way. It is dependent on the poet and his own solitary or spiritual makeup.

(6)How do you begin a poem?
— Beginning a poem could be as haunting as anything there is to seeing a person’s living mother dead in a dream— it could be likened to a nightmare, sometimes. But for truth, writing a poem comes to me as a divine gift— in the form of whispers and inner- songs from the people, the ancestors/ancestresses, to whom poetry (awensem) an aspect of culture belongs to. I am but a mere elementary clairvoyant for it’s manifestation.

(7) Which poetry devices do you use often and why?
— Metaphors, Imagery, Personifications and Smiles do well occur in most works after I have realised what have been given to me through ancestral divinities. They are to me the basic and more easily communing with.

(8). Spoken Words, is It poetry? Why?
— Well, this is one question that has risen the curtains of controversies in recent years. Spoken word is spoken word as poetry as poetry but the former is still and would still be a rib of the latter. Poetry is an encompassing mother that births every ingredient of spoken word. It is like being able to attribute a chromosomal relationship between a stubborn child and it parents. No matter how damning the said child is perceived by society and it’s fraternity, there is no way we can deny the fact that such child is an offspring generated by the parents— the same can be said of spoken word and poetry. Spoken word is an obstinate child of Poetry.

(9). Have you ever won any award? Tell us more.
— Awards haven’t been the parameter for which has led to the constant bleeding of myself on mechanical sheets and electronic pages. However, to be certified with a Specialist Diploma in Poetry by School of Poetry-World Union of Poets, Italy, is inspiring enough and especially when the honour is done by not just anybody but Silvano Bortolazzi, Knight of Merit of the Italian Republic for Poetry. That is like receiving a soothing pat from the firmament to do more for society and humanity. And then 1st Prize for World Union of Poets-Poetry Prize for Africa… etcetera. But principally, these are the major and important ones.

(10). Do you have a favourite poet? Why is he your favourite poet?
— I don’t have a favourite poet but favourite poets. Names like, Kofi Awoonor, Chris Okigbo, Chinua Achebe, Kwesi Brew, Kwadwo Opoku Agyemang and other true African poets like David Diop would forever remain highly prized palm wine to me. They make you believe in the African dream. These poets make you to accept one’s self and accept his melanin of being African. That is for the older generation.
However, Fiifi Abaidoo, Ehi’zogie, Kwabena Agyare, Amofowa Sefa Cecilia, Agyie-Baah, Kojo Poet, Sarpong Kumankoma, Kofi Acquah, Nanabayin, Ayoola Goodness, Alhassan Rabiu, Aremu Adams, Akosua Vibrant, Nene Tetteh Adusu, Abeiku O’, Asamoah Yeboah et al are minds that are intriguingly exceptional in our present times.

(11). What gives you the zeal to write poems as a poet?
— The true African poet as I know, is a medium of ancestral givings and insightfulness of his being African. Africa is simply the fortification hub, Africanness.

(12) Aside poetry, do you write other genres- Drama or Prose?
— In the nearest future, I think would love to be married to Political/Historical Fiction and probably try writing Non-fiction if its balm works the heals with me. But for now, it’s poetry and random essays.

(13). Have you benefited monetarily from poetry? If yes, how?
— Money is money. It would always be a capable force to reckon with. Poetry is poetry. In the first chapter of Mfantse Creation Story, Oyankopon (god) was a Poet first before creating elements that money came out from. Every poet that can make money from his works should but money isn’t everything. I haven’t made enough from it, it can’t even buy a cup of gari….softly laughs… But I know that writing pays in some other important respect other than solely being monetarily.

(14). Have you ever experienced any drumbeat of criticisms? If yes, what was your reaction…?
— Except for a few typos, maybe in the nearest future. But I believe personally that criticism is the herbalist of writing in general.

(15). What are your exciting moments as a poet?
— When the poet in me is able to reincarnate himself after a poetic ejaculation.

(16). When did you nurse the ambition of becoming a poet?
— It never occurred to me that I would be a poet. I didn’t know anything about that particular genre, as it stands today in it English writing, until I was done with high school. But as I have always said, growing up from a small farming village, I knew very well with my conscience that I was a beautiful liar. I had good listening small ears like that of a squirrel, so I easily bend the tongue to create lies out of stories as my own stories but they ended in precision and time-spot like poetry. I could, however, be said to be a poet through my association with works of other poets.

(17). You man a group- The Village Thinkers, what have been your achievements and challenges.
— Well…. The Village Thinkers is still under the tutelage of the ancestorship. Their wisdom would tell with time when the leaf of the Oak should fall beneath it’s buttress roots.

(18) What should be the life of a poet?
— The life of a poet shouldn’t be addiction to fantasies. It should be the life of an everyday normal person. Except that the poet should be a keen observer and a mirror upon which the million realities and reasons of humanity could be measured.

(19). What pieces of advice do you have, for Poets From Our Savannah “PFOS FAMILY” (Group of poets that nominated you to be interviewed)
— Just be You. Be who you want to be remembered for in the years to come when the frailty of human memories set in upon a person’s life. Grow yourself into that home that even being in exile draws your attention to.

(20). Sire, your last words for poets looking up to you from our platform.
— I always say, I don’t expect anyone to look up to me. I expect people to look into themselves, search through the webbed cubicles of internal solitude and find that unique person; that writer, that poet, that artist, that storyteller who can confidently say, this is my root— this is the village I have rise from and it’s that village’s untold stories I write to the world.

Zakaria Gbepo Ibrahim
(Head of the interviewers’ Unit)

Fuseini Dipantiche Mohammed Naporoo Kamaldeen Shitobu


Interview with a Ghanaian artist and musician: Worlasi by Kofi Acquah

Hello, I am Kofi Acquah and welcome to The Village Thinkers-Ghana.


WORLASI : I’m Worlasi, thank you for having me.

K.A : It’s a privilege to have a personal encounter with such an inspiring and talented artiste like you. Besides, great minds like yours are not easy to come by. Could you please tell me more about Worlasi?

WORLASI : Worlasi was born and raised in Ghana, and he hails from Agbozume, volta region. He is a figure painting artist and also a musician.

K.A : Great. How did the whole thing of your music career began? Have you ever dreamt of becoming an artiste?

WORLASI : Well, it all began after Secondary School. I was at home one day feeling bored, so I wanted to do something. I tuned in to Yfm, and interestingly some music were banging on air. In fact, some weren’t good at all. On hearing that, I said to myself; “O’ this is not good, I can do it”. I began playing around with it anytime I was bored, and as time went by, I developed interest in it and felt the need to polish it. Though, I have never dreamt of becoming an artiste but knew I will become an artist rather. Because I always keep(t) drawing and painting. I actually knew nothing about music.

K.A : So, are you also into anything else apart from music?
If yes, how do you juggle them together, knowing well that it’s not an easy task?


WORLASI : Yes, I paint and do drawing. I’m an artist. A figure painting artist. But you know, music in Ghana doesn’t really pay well. And I’m not doing the art because music is not paying well. I do art because that was what I schooled for. That is exactly my field. Music only served as a hobby, it was just by the way. I don’t fumble in anyway, combining all these. Because I already and also have a job whilst music is just my hobby. Although they are sometimes interlaced and seem stressful, but everything under the sun has got its pros and cons. Again, I do music when I’m bored and also jump to art when I’m bored.

K.A : What genre of music do you do?

WORLASI : All I can say is a mixture of soul and rap. But its African flavour makes me call it an Afro music. I sometimes term it as Afro rap or Afro soul. But I know I’m doing music and people have it. I don’t really bother myself with the genre.

K.A : What inspires you the more to pour out your heart and share your thoughts through your music?

WORLASI : I’m inspired by what goes on around me. The experiences of people, my personal experiences and my instrumentals inspire me. I make my own rhythms. Yes, I make the instrumentals for my music all by myself. Anytime I finish ‘cooking’ a beat, I sit back, listen to it and that inspires me to write.

K.A : Worlasi, are you a poet?
Do you in anyway believe the saying that, writers are not paid?
And what do you say to that?

WORLASI : I don’t even know whether I’m a poet. All I know is that, I write and listen to music. *Sighs*, I even don’t know how to put it. The fact is that, I don’t have any basis in neither music nor poetry. All that I do come straight from within me, and I do it because I feel it’s right. Honestly speaking, I don’t think I have what it takes to be a poet. I don’t want to call myself a poet, because I won’t be able to answer questions if I’m called upon, so far as poetry is concerned. I’m just doing music.
Anyway, talking about people not getting paid, I think it has become the status quo. It cuts across almost everywhere. I myself am not paid, and I’m sure there are some mainstream artistes who are also not getting paid. However, I don’t know what I can do about it. We just have to keep working hard. We must let them know that we are important. You can’t just go to someone and ask him/her for money. You let them know, that they need you so they have to pay you. That’s how it’s supposed to be. So you work hard and let them know that we are worth it. We have to come together, write together and let them know what we have. Then, they will pay for what we have. But we can’t just sit down and be relaxed; expecting them to pay us any amount they want. Yeah, you understand? I don’t know what’s going on actually, but the issue of not getting paid and paid well is everywhere. It’s not only poets/writers. Other disciplines fall victims to this canker. For instance, carpenters, masons et cetera suffer the same thing. It’s up to us to prove ourselves. Let us come together, work together and let them know what we deserve.


K.A : Looking at the journey so far, have you encountered some obstacles?
If yes, how did you overcome them?
In other words, how did you react towards them?

WORLASI : Obstacles? I don’t think so. Apart from money which all of us need it sometimes for something, I haven’t gone through any serious hardship so far. Even money doesn’t get my way, because I never had money when I started. My label is not giving me billions, but they’re helping with the little they have. We only need as much as we need to do what we want to do, to prove to the world what we have. There are people who don’t have anything, yet, the whole world is getting known of them. It’s only by hardwork and commitment. So I can’t say money is an obstacle. No! However, I don’t think I have been through any hardship. But I believe the fact that, there are bad times and good times. And I don’t think I’ve been through bad times enough to term it as obstacles. So far, I think everything is moving on smoothly. I take everything that happens to me softly and get back to work.

K.A : Amazing! How do you see the music industry?
And do you target specific people you want your music to reach?

WORLASI : Hmmm… Charley, I don’t know what’s going on in the industry ooo…. Sometimes I feel like I don’t care about it. The fact is that, I don’t have the time to be nosy about what’s going on in the music industry. Yes, I don’t. I’m doing the art because it’s what I do. That’s what I focus my mind, soul, strength and everything on. I don’t have the time. Excuse me to say that; “I don’t care about what’s going on there”. If it’s affecting me, fine. That’s cool. Then, I have to maybe care about it.
Moreover, inasmuch as I’m doing music and I’m reaching my fans, that’s it. I don’t have special people I want my music to reach. “I want the people to reach to my music “. And my music is reaching people who have to listen to it. I can’t choose the kind of people my music should reach. It’s music, and anyone who understands it can connects. It’s for you.


K.A : Apart from what inspires you, are there some brains behind the scenes who also back the movement?

WORLASI : So far, lyrics writing, beats making and everything is done by myself. I don’t actually have any brain behind it. Once in a while, ‘Kadi Tay’, a friend of mine sends in some ideas if I want to write about this and that. Nobody has written anything for me. I’m still working harder. People, for once in a blue moon send in stuffs, but I haven’t put anything out there that somebody has written for me. No. My management also sometimes put forth some ideas about what to write about. In sum, all I’m saying is that, all writings and everything are done by me, but some ideas sometimes come in.

K.A : Alright Worlasi, where did you school?

WORLASI : I went to Saint Stephen’s catholic school, proceeded to Pope John’s Senior High and finally furthered my education at Takoradi Polytechnic.

K.A : Could you recall one interesting incident that has ever happened in your life?

WORLASI : Interesting? Hehe… Charley. I quite remember my maiden stage performance with Tintin at T-Poly, where they booed me and told us to get off the stage. We were performing the song; “Charley what’s up?”, and I think the video is on youtube.

K.A : What do you intend achieving with music?

WORLASI : I want to make a difference in music. I want people to know and respect what we have. The main aim is to change lives. I want people to call in and say; “O’ Worlasi, because of your music, this and that have happened”. I want us to be great and better people. In that, I don’t understand why we, as Africans, always move backwards. I want my music to give strength to the people. I want positive attitudes. They have to be strong, hardworking, intelligent, creative and more of greatness. That’s the main aim of my music. I want my music to reach the right people. Not necessarily reaching out to the whole wide world at large, but to those who need it. Let them have that change which will benefit them.

K.A : You know what Worlasi?
I have finally come to the most hanging part of this interview. I have kept an internal conflict as to when at all will my favourite question land. Now, this is the time……hehe…..
Can you whisper to my hearing, your favourite food?

WORLASI : My favourite food is banku with okro stew, filled with crabs, fresh fish and ‘wole’. I dont like ‘poku’, but salmon is cool. And I don’t like plenty palm oil too.

K.A : Who is your favourite female and male artiste both locally and internationally?


WORLASI : Favourite Ghanaian male artiste? Charley a lot. I respect M.anifest. His writing skill is dope, and Wanlov. Infact, their works are amazing. Those two guys, *sighs*, I can’t choose one and leave the other. However, there are others like; EL, Kojo-Cue, Wanzam etc. But so far, M.anifest and Wanlov (Fokn Boiz). Their arts are dope. I used to like Irene when it comes to female artistes rating, but I’ve stop hearing from her. Right now, I have begun knowing Nana Yaa, (Pat Thomas’ daughter). I think she is the best female vocalist I’ve ever heard in Ghana. I think she is Dope! Dope! Dope! I’ll pick her over. So far, Nana Yaa is dope.
Internationally, I would go for Kendrick Lamar and Hopsin. For female, I think I like Rihanna.

K.A : I am a seasonal supporter of FC Barcelona and Kumasi Asante Kotoko. How about you?
Both locally and internationally?

WORLASI : I’m not a football fun at all. I only love Barça for their skill of playing. They play well sometimes. That’s all. Actually, I don’t watch football, because I’m not a football fun.

K.A : Well Worlasi, I think I have learnt a lot from you. But before I leave you, what do you have for the young, up and coming artistes out there who have been touched by your experience so far?

WORLASI : Eeii! Hmmmm… This question, hehe… Young, up and coming artistes? I’m also up and coming artiste ooo… Charley. I’ve not gotten to anywhere yet at all. I’ve only released my first project last year in September. I’m still up and coming. I’ve not been in this game long enough to advise somebody on what to do. Moreover, everyone has his/her own ways of doing things. So I can’t show somebody what to do. All that I can say is to do what comes from the heart. Focus on your fans, and always give out to them; the best you can. One has to also respect his/her art and make sure he does not disappoint his fans and himself as well. You understand? It’s all about what you are doing, and that people are falling in love with your work. When you keep that going on, charley, everything will be cool. You feel fulfilled. It’s not about the money and the awards. I don’t care about that. Maybe a young, up and coming artiste wants that. That’s why I can’t actually give advice. Everybody and what he wants to become, and how to be seen in the music industry.

K.A : Thanks Worlasi, for granting us a space for this thrilling interview. We look forward to seeing you at the grammy awards in the future.

WORLASI : Thanks for having me too, Kofi Acquah.


About Writer

Kofi Acquah; born in May 1994 and a student, hails from the central region of Ghana. He is one refined voice of poetic and artistic word-score. Kofi is an Author and a poetry performer. He is a co-author of the current trending poetry anthology of 3 Emerging Ghanaian Poets dubbed “PALM LEAVES” published by Forte Publications, Liberia &Thailand. His participation in writing contests has thus, earned him a certificate in an online American Poetry Marathon show. Some of his works have also appeared on prominent literary online publications such as Poetry Soup, Tuck Magazine, Allpoetry, Poem Hunter, Stage Afrik, Lunaris Review, Best New Poems and thepoetswithoutlimits. He is an active board member and linguist of “The Village Thinkers” an Africanism Poetry Movement based in Cape Coast-Ghana. Kofi’s attention has also been received on Radio stations such as Cape Fm 93.3 in Ghana and Fifthwall Radio, Florida-USA.