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A History of Disappearance

by Sara Lubala


Sarah Lubala is a Congolese-born poet. Her family fled the Democratic Republic of Congo two decades ago admidst political unrest as militant factions tried to overthrow the dictator Mobutu Sese Seko. Her family relocated first to Cape Town, South Africa, then Abidjan – the capital of the Ivory Coast – before returning to South Africa and settling in Johannesburg. She has since spent her life in various parts of Africa, Asia and Europe and believes herself to be from here, there, everywhere and nowhere. She currently lives in Johannesburg with her husband and cat. Sarah has been twice shortlisted for the Gerald Kraak Award, and once for The Brittle Paper Poetry Award as well as longlisted for the Sol Plaatje EU Poetry Award. She is also the winner of the Castello Di Duino XIV prize.



“These poems are not about resolution, but about making a path through spaces of mourning. It is a collection to travel with, a soundtrack to the loop of losing and finding oneself.”
Shari Daya

It is a lyrical, painfully beautiful debut for Sarah […]”
Alesia Alexander

“What more would you want from a collection? It shines in its mystery; and it haunts your thoughts.”
Kris Van der Bijl

Her poetry collection weaves together different forms of disappearances. ‘Death, abandonment, displacement, disavowal, much of these histories are marked by disappearances of all kinds,’ she tells OkayAfrica. ‘I wanted to write about disappearance as a structure of experience, and not only as an event.’”
Adhiambo E Magak, (Interview)



ISBN 9781990922602
Pages 58
Dimensions 210 x 148mm
Published 2022
Publisher Botsotso Publishing , South Africa
Format Paperback