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Wesley Pepper

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Slam Poetry Profile : Neosapien

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Donald Neosapien Mokgale is a young, black and intelligent multi-slam winning poet who began writing poetry from 2003. Donald Mokgale, being a lateral thinker who had strong views about pseudonyms, always told himself that he would not formulate one for the sake of it until he was reborn spiritually and after he was reborn, he formulated the name Neosapien. The prefix NEO means new and SAPIEN is taken from Darwin’s theory of evolution where he states that humans are Homosapiens. Donald believed that by being reborn he was renewed and ergo a new human which is the direct translation of the name. The name also means that he is a new breed in his way of thinking and he seeks to alter the perceptions of people through his poetry.

He has been performing in numerous poetry slams and sessions all over Gauteng where he made an ever-fixed mark that differentiates him from other poets to those who have witnessed him perform. He took a break from poetry for two years after he lost his poetry book with all his work although during this break in 2007, he had the opportunity to have his work (one of his pieces) published in an anthology called Portraits of Propaganda which is on sale in various book stores in Johannesburg. His perpetual love for poetry brought him back to the performance scene in 2009 where he competed in The Urban Soul Poetry Slam held at Maponya Mall and went on to take second place on the 29th of May with only one prepared piece and two freestyle pieces.

He began getting invitations to perform at numerous other sessions like Freshly Sliced Poetry Sessions, House of Hunger Poetry Slam, The Showcase at AFDA and Voices Poetry Slam just to name a few. He rode the wave of recognition that followed after his performances at The Urban Soul Slam and accepted an invitation to compete at The House of Hunger Poetry Slam in Parkhurst and after competing numerous times he eventually won it on the 20th of March 2010. He received an all expenses paid trip to go to Zimbabwe to compete at the House of Hunger Poetry Slam there but unfortunately, he was unable to go because of unforeseen circumstances. Sponsors who witnessed his victory at the House of Hunger Poetry Slam handpicked him as one of the poets they want to take with to the extension of The House of Hunger Poetry Slam in Botswana in the latter half of 2010 where he would be going with legendary poets like Eric Miyeni and Lesego Rampolokeng just to name a few.

He then received and accepted an invitation to compete at the Voices Poetry Slam held at Braamfontein on the 3rd of April 2010 where the winner would win an all expenses paid trip to Durban to compete there, which he subsequently won and along with this he also secured himself a spot to perform at the Jozi Book Fair in August 2010 at Museum Africa, Newtown, Joburg. His brand began to grow even further as he received an invitation to be profiled on www.consciousness.co.za where some of his work is displayed including interviews and video footage of some of his performances.

His style is pun-chy and thought provoking, it comprises of social commentary and his life experiences all embellished with riveting figures of speech and uncanny wit. He believes in using creativity in poetry instead of just inking lamentations about freedom and the state of society. He says that he does not like the state of poetry in South Africa at the moment because of how poets are boxed and viewed although he is happy that it is growing and getting recognition. He is very conceptual and theatrical in his performances which he believes is how poetry should be as opposed to stuttering book reciters found at Poetry Slams. He positions himself as a Professional who performs at corporate gigs and functions such as Birthdays, Gala Dinners, office parties and special occasions. His rates vary based on the length of his set and type of occasion. He is currently working on an anthology of his own due to be published sometime in 2011 and he is also working on a DVD called Slam the City with a few other poets where they go around designated areas and perform to showcase the lively nature of poetry in different environments and the impact it has on people from an entertainment and educational point of view.

Quote: “…I rebel against the system by aligning my mind with minds that don’t mind applying their minds…”

For bookings please contact: Donald.mokgale@gmail.com; 076 149 5912; add him on Facebook with his name Donald Neosapien Mokgale.

Here is a piece from Neosapien:


The art of story telling

Hi! May I tell you a story? Once upon a time I travelled through time to tell untold portions of stories that were told and I remember finding Sir Isaac Newton arguing with Snowhite about the gravitational law. The 7 dwarfs were smoking weed and they were claiming that the gravitational law doesn’t apply to them because…they were ‘high’. So they asked me to intervene and I told them, “You need to compare apples with apples”.

So while travelling through time I switched to only eating halaal foods and came across 3 little pigs…whose foundations of life were being ‘blown’ by the winds of adversity. So I ask how strong your foundations are. Because while smokers ‘huff and puff’ I’m here to BLOW YOUR MIND DOWN from the ignorance that exists, that is the big bad wolf of life.

Ok so let me tell you a story, once upon a time there were modern day relationships and almost every girl was a Cinderella wearing glass…Jimmy Choo heels and was only interested in a prince charming whose pumpkin carriage had a Mercedes or BMW logo on it, forgetting that their foundation was domestication. The teenagers were little red riding hoods whose big bad wolves were sugar daddies…and they ask, “my what big cars you have”… “the better to take you home with my dear”….”my what big wallets you have”… “the better to buy your virginity with my dear”…So tell me how many little red riding hoods have you saved from the woods in your hood? The strategy of this story is to leave bread crumbs as clues like Hansel and Gretel, because I know that a portion of society are like sleeping beauties waiting to be awaked by a kiss from a prince while others are Humpty Dumpties sitting on walls, and we all know that fence sitters have great big falls…such that all the ministers cars’ and all of Msholozi’s wives won’t be able to put the lives of fence sitters back together again. I have learnt by farming skills from Jack and planted ‘seeds’ of thought in your minds and cultivated a bean stalk of profound thinkers so…FI FY FO FUM…this is no fairytale just the essence of poetry.

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