#Article (Archive)

A Tribute to Dr. Lenrie Peters

Jun 2, 2009, 8:49 AM

Ode to that iconic hero of times who lived to bash best poetry props

Cracking the aging baobab trees aloud and sailing boats on Atlantic waters by his mighty unshakeable pen of times and down by the "Kachikally" of Bakau where the pool of crocodiles reigns he saw the friendly white crocodiles.

Ode to that Gambian medical surgeon who healed souls of the of sick to health over the long years of memorial times by his indisputable natural gift from God and today, he is gone for good, for ever to answer to an inevitable call of God though his life unshakeable legacy stays till the last day of human breathe on earth.

In your dark tomb, we heard aloud "We are home! We are home!" as was your favorite tone of melody lines echoing aloud from your one time sweet tongue and now swallowed by the mighty earth to remain silent for God knows how long starting from Adam of first creation to the last soul to taste of death on earth.

Ode to that inspiration of poets and hang in there while I get the bashing on Gimme me, and gimme me some candle light and your flag of life legacy flying high up while I illuminate mother Africa's bushes with a message of unity and hope that will live forever till 'faw abadan' and you sleep well till again. (Amen.)

By Yero Jallow, Gainako's Co-editor, (Dalton) USA



Dear all

I am sorry to have to be the carrier of such bad news if you have not yet heard of it.

Dr. Lenrie Wilfred Peters has breathed his last yesterday, wednesday 27 May 2009 at the Hopital Diantec in Dakar at the age of 76 after a brief illness.

Dr Pters, a poet surgeon has published several works: poems, articles, short stories, film scripts and a novel.

Unfortunately, prior to the demise of this literary giant and the trailblazer of Gambian literature, a translation of a selection of his poems is under publication as well as a special pear reviewed journal on his works. This was meant to accompany a special honour on his behalf. God disposes even where we propose.

On your behalf, i extend our condoleances to his family. May his soul to rest in perfect peace!

Cherno Omar Barry


The African literary family is in mourning. But it is his courage to be who he was that will dry our eyes.

Nana Grey Johnson


A very sad development indeed. My condolences to the Gambian literary and medical families, and to the entire Gambian nation. Dr. Peters will be sorely missed.



Fellow Gambians or honorary Gambians,

It is with a deep sense of loss that I wanted to share the attached news of the passing away of Dr. Lenrie Peters - that Dr. Sidi Jammeh shared with me.

Apart from being a world class medical doctor, Lenrie was Gambia's most renowned writer and indeed the founding father of modern Gambian literature in English.

Gambia has lost two big literary giants -  Ebou Dibba a few years ago -  at a relatively young age; and now that marvellous partriarch, Lenrie Peters.  

I got to know Lenrie in my early high school years and he was both a friend and a mentor, and I usually visited him at Westfield Clinic in Kanifing, where on the margins of his busy medical practice, he will take time off and sit in the yard and review my creative writings and offer advice and encouragement.  We became friends ever since.  And virtually, every time I visit the Gambia, I will visit Lenrie at his house at Cape Point and spend some time chatting with him.  He will be greatly missed as a mentor and friend.   In my view, Lenrie was one of Gambia's best.  Hardworking, creative, and committed (he spent his entire life in private medical practice, serving the enormous medical needs of the Gambia population).  Lenrie was one of those few and necessary Gambian men who will be forever remembered for putting the Gambia on the literary map of the world.  I will truly miss him, and plan to do a more extended eulogy of him in the Gambian papers.  May his soul, which has touched many the world over, rest in peace.


Tijan Sallah