An excerpt from Waiting For An Angel by Helon Habila

Hey guys, I’ve been trying to read African literature to enhance my writing skills. And I fell completely in love with this book by Helon Habila. I bought it because obviously he had won the Caine prize for African writing in 2001. The style, diction and writing pattern got me fascinated. I’m done reading the book but yet it seems like there’s more to be gotten from the book.


I decided to share. There’s a part titled ‘Alice’ and I loved the writeup about promises and love. Enjoy.

What light and winged things promises are,fluttering away on the wind no sooner than they are uttered. I also promised to meet you the next day when I left you in the morning, a happy smile on your face. I had a happy smile too. I look back at my life before and after that moment, and I daresay that that was about the happiest moment of my life,that moment spent with you. We were not to meet again for over three years- because my friend went mad, because of the riots, because I dropped out of school, because of many things. What was a mere promise in the face of all these cataclysms, what was love but luxury? But life’s paths are never straight, they wind and turn and convolute and return long-lost friends back together again- only now when they meet things can never be like that used to be: we have gone through so much sea change on our long voyage. We have acquired other tendencies, other appetites, other loyalties, and other pains. And other lovers: for me there was Sarimam- my other great love- but no two loves , or pains, or loyalties can ever be the same.

PS: I hope one of you readers see this and get a copy of the book. You definitely would not regret having it in your library.

PSS🙈:I hope you like the excerpt too. Indeed, the writer captured how it is with promises and love and relationship and time and how all these merge and divide at some point.

PSSS:mrgreen:: Do read an African literature today. Gracias.

I wrote once again.


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