Lexical variations and the quest motif in Christopher Okemwa's poetry, The gong
Oimba, Achieng Monica
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This study focuses on lexical variations and the quest motif in Christopher Okemwa's anthology; The Gong. The study is premised on the understanding that lexis is an essential ingredient in any work of art particularly in as far as the writer exploits the available linguistic resources to render his/her experience. Therefore, we sought to investigate lexical choices in Okemwa's poetry and how these variations have enabled him to articulate issues affecting society and also to bring out the quest motif in his poetry. The study relied on Deconstruction and Stylistic theories in the analysis of the lexical variations. We demonstrate how through them, the poet is able to communicate to his audience and foreground the quest motif. We utilized library research, which involved the textual analysis of both primary and secondary texts. We also deployed purposive sampling in the selection of the twenty-six poems for this study. The findings of this study reveal that there are lexical variations in Okemwa's poetry. Okemwa engages various lexical choices in his poetry not only to bring into the fore the quest motif in his poetry but also to foreground the various issues affecting contemporary society. Lexical choices in Okemwa's poetry are not deviations as such but variations in the usage of lexical items in his poetry from their corresponding ordinary use. Therefore, the study is invaluable to the literary fraternity since it has opened up a window into the world of the twenty-first century Kenya poets, showing how such poets exploit the vast language resources at their disposal to express their social vision, reveal how they view the contemporary society and the solutions they prescribe for the widespread socio-economic and political woes.