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Analysis of ''Losers of Everything'' by David Diop


                The sun used to laugh in my hut
                And my women were lovely and lissome
                Like palms in the evening breeze.
                My children would glide over the mighty river
                And my canoes would battle with crocodiles
                The motherly moon accompanied our dances
                The heavy frantic rhythm of the tomtom,
                Tomtom of joy,tomtom of carefree life
                                  Amid the fires of liberty

                Then one day,silence........
                It seemed the rays of the sun went out
                In my hut empty of meaning
                My women crushed their painted mouths
                On the thin hard lips of steel-eyed conquerors
                And my children left their peaceful nakedness
                For the uniform of iron and blood.
                Your voice went out too
                The irons of slavery tore my heart to pieces
                Tomtom  of my  nights,tomtoms of my fathers.

                 David Diop

      About the Author

David Mandessi Diop (July 9, 1927 – August 29, 1960) was one of the most promising French African  poets known for his contribution to the Negritude literary movement. His work reflects his anti-colonial stance and his hope for an independent Africa.

Structure of the poem '' Losers of Everything''
       The poem is a free verse  of two stanzas contrasting the precolonial era and the post 
colonial era.
Stanza 1- The stanza depicts the innocence of the people before the arrival of the white,

the picture of a simple,harmonious and cultural life of the people is portrayed. There is 

cordiality ,love peace   and harmony.

Stanza 2- This depicts the predicament of the people,when the whites came. 

There is absence of peace,love 

and harmony. This stanza describes the destructive effects of colonialism.
     '' Women crushed their painted mouth''
The children lost the chance to explore their environment. The loss of cultural values,freedom,

peace made Africa to be corrupt.

Themes in ''Losers of Everything''
1.Theme of loss of innocence
2.Theme of colonialism
3. Theme of pollution of African values

Figures of speech in '' Losers of Everything''
1. personification- The sun is described as being able to perform certain actions in the past but not doing them now.
          ''  The sun used to laugh in my hut''
2. Simile- The lovliness and graceful movement of the women are compared with palms in the evening breeze.

3. Metephor-
''the fire of liberty'' - the desires for freedom is hot in the peoples' mind.
''the iron of slavery''-represents the grip of oppression the people were subjected to.
''the uniform of iron and blood''- denotes tyranny,slavery and oppression.

4. Synedoche
line 18 ''tore my hearts to pieces''. The heart there represents the feeling experienced ny the poet. It symbolizes the traumatized African spirit.

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