An Enabling Environment

By Eliseus Bamporineza

“I have read…” echoed in my world.

At the African Writers Trust (AWT) Writing and Reading Residency 2021, I felt empowered by inspiring voices from my fellow writers every time they gave feedback on different stories shared by some of us. It stunned me to hear them provide constructive comments, not just “Ooh what a nice work! Congratulations! Keep up…”.  They went beyond and dived deep, excavating some loopholes and suggesting what should be done to polish the manuscript. It was my first time to be in such an enabling environment when it comes to literature and reading culture.

During one of the peer review sessions, I shared some of my poems. The feedback I received pushed me to be more mindful of word choice/diction when I write poetry. 

I am delighted that I have created new friendships. Not only did we exchange contacts, but we also created a WhatsApp group where we share opportunities and ask for help. Furthermore, I got to talk about my poetry book “Born to Be Human”, and Ms. Susan N. Kiguli, poet and associate professor in the department of literature at Makerere University bought a copy and promised to teach some of my poems at the school. On the last day, I performed some of my poems during the barbeque night, and of my fellows, Lillian Aujo recited “The Hill I Stand on”, the poem Goretti Kyomuhendo, AWT director liked most and preferred someone to perform it for her.

Eliseus and Susan Kiguli pose for a photo

Photo Credit: Fred Mubiru


Eliseus Bamporineza is an author and student. He is pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations, with a concentration in Foreign Policy and Diplomacy with a minor in Philosophy. He has published a debut poetry book, “Born to Be Human”.

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