Would you please introduce yourself to the readers?
Asalamu Caleykium, my name is Mohamed Ahmed Shiekh. I was born in Kismayo and no it's not in America.
I'm a huge fan of TNP. I reside in South Africa at the moment. I'm not familiar with interviews and stuff so sorry if my intro is not quiet professional.
When did you first start writing poetry and was there any particular incidents in your life that inspired you to write?
Well let me be honest, I didn't see it coming, I was never a fan of poetry, I only used to run into certain sayings.
I guess hip-hop played a major role. I wrote my first official piece in 2008 thanks to Ayan. The biggest incident that i remember was my grandmother running in the streets of Kismayo barefooted, she was trying to get a hold of me and my sister. It was a scary scene, the gun sounds and everything was horrible. That's the day I chose to be part of a generation that is willing to make a change.
What does "being creative" mean to you?
Freedom! Yes that's what being creative means to me. I mean God gave everyone some sort of powers to do things and creativity is surely the greatest freedom. My point is, you have the ability to create something negative or positive which is quiet amazing if you ask me. Having the ability to inspire someone is a priceless form of freedom.
What do you try to communicate with your poetry?
I communicate with myself and a team of dreams! When I come on TNP and start reading a poem from any of the writers I see myself thru it. Poetry means the world to me, it's a communication between my heart and mind, when my heart is about to give up (KNOCK KNOCK), there comes a little courage and hope from my mind through poetry and I just keep moving on.
What do you do when you go into a dry spell of some sort or how do you write another piece when you have been away from it for some time
Do you sit and think through every word of every stanza or do you just write freely and allow the words to flow?
It's a good question, well frankly, I just go on Youtube, listen to few tracks, reflect on the world e.g
How Somalia used to be. It also depends on the subject, I don't have to think of Somalia if my plan is to make a sister smile. I ran into a lot of people telling me 'Mohammed use the ancient words or make your words way stronger, you write your poetry in ''SIMPLE WORDS''. I honestly sit there and write whatever that comes to my mind. In other words, I let the words flow.
Who are some of your favorite poets?
Definintly Black Ice! The power and energy in his poetry is unbelievable also, he is not too mainstream. If you are a fan of Def Poetry then you know him well. Pablo Neruda is another one of my favorite poets.
What advice do you have for aspiring poets? Any word of advice for closet poets?
BE YOURSELF!!! Never let anyone dictate your vision, The power is yours. Poetry is a beautiful thing it's some sort of spiritual power, use it to heal not to hurt.
What does writing poetry do for you?
Writing poetry makes me feel like the superman that Somalia needs without the webs and the scary stuff
It's a wonderful feeling i have no words to answer this question.
Anything else you would like to share?
Everyone was born to Worship the Almighty God after that we are all given the ability to do things. Such as to move and touch things but when you depart people will remember not only your name but what you have left behind. Remain positive in order to meet greatness. The best weapon to use against those who envy you is success
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