[Darko Antwi's] use of Twinglish (a linguistic mix of Twi and English) in the phrase, "Saint Domeabra," is one of the many powers that this poem uses to convey its themes. It is about time for us, writers of African descent, to be creative on multiple levels when it comes to language. Chinua Achebe and Ngugi wa Thiong’o were unapologetic with the use of native words in their prose. Poetry in Ghana, as a microcosm of African poetry, has been reluctant to give the rest of the world a taste of our beautiful languages. It is about time African poets and writers put their words where their hearts are. The use of a local word or phrase as the pivot of a poem urges the English speaker/reader to understand a word that is not native to his/her tongue. African writers can inject this instrument of linguistic reciprocity to achieve seven main objectives:
1. To forge new words made out of their own languages
2. To maintain the use of their native language in a world where other languages are dying or acquiescing themselves to English
3. To give their work authenticity and identity
4. To broaden the lexicon of the English language, which still lacks words that properly describe certain actions, activities and people
5. To keep the contextual integrity of their works
6. To open their world to the rest of the world, and
7. To make their poetry more accessible to the less-educated in their societies.
- Prince Mensah, in his "How Poems Work" essay on Darko Antwi's "The Burial of Saint Domeabra" over at One Ghana, One Voice. You can read the whole essay here.