Home > poems > “Enkuan” a poem by Teddy Afro

“Enkuan” a poem by Teddy Afro

Ethiopian music star Tewdros Kasahaun (fondly called Teddy Afro) has recently read number of poems that he has written while he was in Kaliti Prison. The poems were mostly personal observations, reflections and meditations and have some prominent people as their subjects.The following Amharic poem that came out in today’s edition of Kumneger magazine criticizes some people who were trying to make a scandal out of the renowned writer Sebhat Gebregziabher’s marriage to a girl much younger than him.”Enkuan” which literally means “So what?” is a word that Sebhat often makes use of when people confronts him with accusatory remarks.
The selection of the poems will appear in a book coming out soon.



(in the picture: Sebaht)

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  1. Berhanu
    January 31, 2010 at 2:05 am | #1

    First of all, the way Gashe Sebhat seems to have a moral authority and the way many hype, sorta intellectual, idialist youngsters see him as inspiration is just plain sick. A drunkard, chat kami, radical with a Grandfatherly look; the young generation are just left with this kind of troubled man for inspiration and role model. Gone are the days of Laurate Tsegaye G/Medihen, Paulos Nongno and look alikes.
    Now, we got teddy, whom the girls drool on, trying to defend Gashe Sebhat.
    Beqa mastewal tefa aydel ?! Gone are the days Chat was a taboo, disgusthing and lame.

  2. Muna
    February 1, 2010 at 2:14 am | #2

    Besake! lol the poem is too funny. Gash Sebhat has been his individualistic himself. The only mistake Gash Sebhat has done is to express himself freely on his lietrature and on a personal basis, he get the out right controversial figure from Berhanu alikes. Too sad. That’s what artists do, express themselves freely. Oh and there is no need to compare Gash Sebhat to others, he has done his share of contribution to Ethiopian lietrature, whether you liked his writing or not, blame your test!

    • Berhanu
      March 6, 2010 at 2:15 am | #3

      Muna, Expressing himself is not the problem. It is when he is given a big platform to influence the mind of the youths. What happened to the censorship department we have before ? All great writers such as Haddis Alemayehu, Baalu Girma, Berhanu Zerihun, Abae Gubenga, Sisay Negusu….etc, as an artists or authors, they wrote about the society, the right and wrong in a society, to change for a better. But this guy make it his business to SHERMUTANIZE his work. In today world, we have been conditioned extreme liberlism is a way to go. The movies, the music, the media, the education system is setting up that way; and it is making its way to different corners of the world.

  3. Juru
    February 3, 2010 at 1:23 pm | #4

    Berhanu, chill! Please, let Gashe Sebhat be Gashe Sebhat. Funny poem, though.

    • Berhanu
      March 6, 2010 at 4:50 am | #5

      If Gashe Sebhat was some kind of court jester at my local Tela Bet, I wouldn’t mind to just chill and laugh at him. But this Elderly guy is being paraded to public like he is the epitome of intellectuality, spirituality and coolenss. Yes, it is normal in our society to listen to our elders, to have them do “Shemegilena” during disputes, or to look upto them in any situation as a moral authority because of thier experience and age old wisdom. However, Gashe Sebhat is just destroying that image. I swear to God, if he has a radio programme, he would be the ‘howard stern’ of Addis.
      On top of it, witnessing the most popular singer in Ethiopia praising and defending him is just a total let down. It is mind boggling, that the likes of Abae Gubenga, Baalu Girma, Berhanu Zerihun departed us early, while Mr. Tikusat, from thier generation still preachs and push for SHERMUTANIZATION of the society in the name ‘SILETENUNET’ and ‘ZEMENAWINET’. It would have been a good favour to us, the youths and the kids who we will bring up as ETHIOPIANS, if he has been silenced.

  4. Berhanu
    February 3, 2010 at 3:39 pm | #6

    When I look at Gashe Sebhat, I look at chat, alcohol, weed + excessive media exposure+ priestly/Abba look = means here you go younglings, here is your Abbaba Tesfaye. here you go, here is your role model.
    There was a time, I found him interesting and cool. But when I started to question few things in a society, he is as distructive as the life style he leads.

  5. February 5, 2010 at 10:25 pm | #7

    Hmm…
    Whether or not I see eye to eye with the sentiment, this post is a reminder of just why I return to Addis Journal time and again [to my surprise :-)]. Keep ‘em coming, Arefe. You are one of a kind blogger.

  6. February 8, 2010 at 8:53 am | #8

    If loving Gash Sebhat is a mistake, I’ll do it unlimited times. If you don’t have sth good/bad, ppl don’t talk abt u. Sebhat has hundreds of good qualities to be talked about. Please guyz, don’t take what ppl tell u about him….go and read “MASTAWESHA SEBHAT GEBREEGZIABHER” written by Zenebe Wella, you will see who is Sebhat. he is always ahead of his time like Atse Tewodros. if u are ahead of ur time, ppl usually don’t accept you. I love this poem, Raise hands to teddy who wrote this thing!! Amen!!

    • Berhanu
      March 6, 2010 at 3:50 am | #9

      “If loving Gash Sebhat is a mistake, I’ll do it unlimited times.” that sure sound like one over-sebhatized zombie inside the cult of sebhatdom. Yes, Gashe Sebhat has cult followers. This happened only because, the antena of morality in Ethiopia has been blasted and smashed into pieces with waves of various ideologies since the begining of 20th century. Also, the media is just giving him all the exposure purposely than other role models. Maybe we don’t have role models anymore. Please don’t compare this Drunk, Chat Chewing, weed head to somebody like Dagmawi Tewodros. How does a person in his right mind compare one of the greatest military tactician in Ethiopian history to a SEKARAM who made his name by writing lustfull stories during his bercha moments. It makes no sense at all. Writing perverted stories does not make you ahead of your time. His famous and lame comeback answer for his critics is, ‘..so what!? you do it under the roof of your house….’. The decay of morality in the western world was the reslut of extrem liberalism with its over sexualization of the society. Thus, became a Godless society. Like it or not, Sex is very powerfull, it gets into the heart of the mass quickly than anything. That is why it is not only a baby making joyous act, but when used wrong, it is a way to corrupt, deciet, kill and dehumnize the spirit of mankind. I’m not saying, hey let us not talk about sex. But the works of Gashe Sebhat are way far from that. Its purpose is not about freedom of expression or modernity but to defile and pollute the minds of youths. Once the market for these kinds work are created, then other would follow Gashe Sebhat’s foot step to feed the market and make money. God forbid, our Addis Abeba is conditioning to be one of the international destinations of whoredom. Citizens needs to wake up before it is too late – or is it too late ? Keep in mind everything that comes from the West or the East isn’t Good. I just hope we would know how to separate the good from the rubbish.

  7. abraham
    February 13, 2010 at 7:56 pm | #10

    Iam the lover of tedy. his poem has very

  8. Someone!
    February 25, 2010 at 2:57 pm | #11

    Ato Berhanu…please Atesbeken…Atsadeb…live your life and let others live their life…be democrat..don’t let others love your wife or your mom only…every one has his/her own taste…if you are so angry that most of the youngesters are looking after Sebhat…Kill yourself…(like Tikusat says)sebhat Chews chat and you don’t..so what? did anyone preach you to chew or smoke or drink? so don’t try to persuade others to live as yours only…for example I don’t chew, smoke (may be forever) but I like Sebhat forever…Beka!…demo who knows you may be one of the….

    • Berhanu
      March 6, 2010 at 6:31 am | #12

      Someone, the thing is I don’t want to live or raise a child in messed up society. Many people share my sentiment too. Things will be better when there is some kind of morality or Chewanet with strong family values. Just For the sake of being a democrat, ‘meren meleqeqe’ wouldn’t do good to our society. Beside that, I didn’t preach to anyone as you claim, I just expressed my concern with the facts and some of you guys just became very defensive. ‘Kill yourself’, now was that really necessary ?? Or that is your way of being ‘democrat’. FYI, ‘Democracy’ is just another scam to rule people, give it a few decades and it will expire.
      “…I like Sebhat forever..Beka!..” lol another SEBHATANIZED droid like Kebraraw. Did I ask you to hate him ? No! Min Aynet zemen meta bakachehu ?! Few months ago I saw a vedio on diretube, a wasted Gash Sebhat surrounded by young girls, blabbering like a SEKARAM he is. To my discomfort, the young girl who sat next to him interviewing and giggling had a bitiqo skirt exposing her tighs with an overall sexy demeanor. As a young guy, It was very hard to not notice her sexualize appearance; while trying to understand his areqe blabbing. One female youtuber commented about the girl, ‘please cover your legs next time’. Another youtuber commented about Gashe Sebhat – ‘ lefedada seqaram..’. The whole thing was just disgusting and awkward. It was like watching my Grand Father or Great Grand Father acting a fool. That would be unbearable, to say the least. Trust me, I had my share of geting wasted, passing out in a car or failing at the door of the nightclubs in my early twenties. I’m not ashamed of those moments. But this guy is a danger with a free pass from the regime to shit all over the mind of the youths. Youths, don’t be brainwashed or flow with flow all the time, sometimes have the balls to step aside and examine the flow and the trends. It ain’t easy if there is no guidance, but it must be done.

  9. Abera
    March 4, 2010 at 4:30 pm | #13

    The more I observe Teddy the more I have come to conclude that he is market savvy and not necessarily a consequential artist. He craves popularity without working much for it. He just knows how to take advantage of opportunities. Think of the following:
    1. Haile wins a race and Teddy rides on the popular current to produce “instant” hit
    2. Tilahun Gessese dies and he takes to the podium, so to speak, to claim his mantle
    3. He goes to jail on account of a death of a street child; he gets out of prison and hold a festival the proceeds of which is [supposedly] for helping the homeless
    4. He sides with Sebhat’s irresponsible behavior and composes the poem above, etc
    In other words, he selectively rubs with ‘big names’ in the hope of being identified as such. That, to me, is low and a cheap shot.

  10. March 12, 2010 at 10:54 am | #14

    Okay, @ Berhanu, Sebhat is one…..But there are lots of ‘good ppl’ including you for the youth. The thing is – the youth doesn’t take the ‘dogma’ – you said ‘morale – bahil – minamin’ into account. Don’t be full, the youth knows what you already know. We know what’s right and what is not. That’s what (your dogma) we must fight. Don’t let us live by your definition. Okay, thanks to techno….I can lock and watch porn inside ma bedroom without ma parents/society watching me. It’s not because Sebhat is taking about it. You may be religious guy…if that’s the case….I told you, you are among one of those guyz who usually say “DIRO KERE”…… I beg you once again, did you read ‘Mastawesha Sebhat G/egziabher’ or you don’t have that book at the Shelf b/c it is dangerous for your kids? Did you read ‘Amist, Sidist, Sebat – like 5-6-7′?
    Come read them and let’s talk about Sebhat!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Cheers!!

  11. Bello
    March 17, 2010 at 7:52 am | #15

    Birhanu and Abera, shame on you two. When you two die, it’s end of story. 40 days after you die, you’re forgotten forever. If you’re lucky and get a decent burial and a termite-proof coffin, a future burglar or two who will vandalize your grave will be the last people to read your names written on anything. Not so with Sibhat G/Egziabher; generations after his death, millions will read his books and books written about him. There will be movies about his life and times. He will be qouted in endless published works and speeches for generations to come. On the cosmic scale of things, you two almost never lived on planet earth…….and that’s the honest to God truth.

    • Abera
      March 17, 2010 at 3:06 pm | #16

      Hello Bello.
      I like your passion. But it is all Bell’O. A bell. An O. A bellow from below. Let me repeat what I said earlier. Teddy Afro is light [a fluke]. Sebhat is a disgrace. I agree with you that Sebhat is a good writer though a lazy one. [I don't think you noticed I did not comment on his writing, just his behavior; go back and read.]

      You also pretend to he an oracle of sorts. So you have mapped out on a “cosmic scale” Sebhat’s fate and mine? Do I need to remind you that you forgot your own fate? Here is where I come to your aid. Go ahead and make a documentary on Sebhat’s life and work. I am not joking at all. That will be a great service to generations to come. I only wish someone was able to do that for the Old Guard – Tsegaye Gabremedhin, Wogayehu, Haddis, [I want to cry, man]. My only solace is Arefe and his blog. Take care, man. I really enjoyed writing this. I love you.

  12. March 21, 2010 at 5:37 am | #17

    I don’t want to disturb the brain of Tedy, coz he has many things for us.
    But we have to take the idea of commenter BRIHANU.

  13. Belihu
    March 31, 2010 at 12:56 pm | #18

    If anyone who is a religious person should reject the teaching(writings) of Sebhat since itis against God by any means.

  14. benyam
    December 2, 2010 at 9:01 am | #19

    it’s a very funny poem & teddy is still going forward never look back. teddy we love u . please birhanu don’t try to be a saint be like ur name.

  15. Rahel
    June 20, 2011 at 3:58 am | #20

    oooooooooo Brihanu you observe right both Gash Sbhat and Teddy are icons for this generation. I think teddy wrote this to teach becose he is the best writer and he is responsible for tommorow. I agree with your idea of our roll models have to be moraled not in sence of religen but to built tommorow togather .We have to be responsible including Gash Sbhat . In my belife teddy also hate what Gash Sbhat did but to teach what he hate this is very nice way of expretion moraliy ( qne zerefe) .To tell you the truth it is very funny poem and meanig full not to pass your time and play with new generation time .Teddy bravo,bravo,bravo……

  16. Magnaw
    February 20, 2012 at 7:53 pm | #21

    I belive that we have to live our life and must let others too. What Teddy tries to tell us in his poem is true from the point of Gashe Sibhat.

  17. Selamsew
    February 21, 2012 at 11:07 am | #22

    I like the poem, and the surprising thing is these are the first Ethiopian who loves each other even if both of them are Famous. because as we know well “MANIM TAWAKI ETHIOPIAWI YIHIN YAHIL AYIWADEDIM, AYIMOGAGESIM” and God bless both of them

  18. Abebaw
    February 22, 2012 at 6:04 pm | #23

    Thank You Teddy ! When every thing is said and done, gash Sibhat is one of the greatest literary geniouses that Ethiopia will never forget. He quenched the literary thirst of many and will continue to do so till kingdom come. Teddisha, thank you for defending our hero in this beautiful poem. May gash Sibhat’s soul of gold rest in peace. Amen.

  19. March 19, 2012 at 12:48 pm | #24

    Write mor by amhric

  20. May 1, 2012 at 11:37 pm | #25

    Such a dialogue of cognitive and intutive mindes; I really enjoyed reading the comments as much as I enjoyed reading the poem. Wow folks ! I don’t know who to disagree with, all concerns of both perspectives are Valid, beautifully and reasonably stated . That is what makes us a society of a great nation. We need Birhanu’s/respect/, Abera’s/respect/….and all the rest of you …….and Kebraraw; I am glad you came up with amist sidist sebat
    My only difference is that wether or not this gitim is actually written by Teddy Afro him self;
    Reasons: I remember that Tedy has exhibited six poems at Addis Gessese’s hotel/I forgot the name/; as soon as he was released from prison; and one of them is “Ye enquan me’at” for Gash sibhat him self; and as far as my memory serves that one was different in it’s content, and aparrently this style is associted to other occupational poets than Tedy Afro ….. (do your reaserch) And the above poem was first appeared /published?/
    under a different name

  21. July 4, 2012 at 8:08 am | #26

    Getch- Sebat le abes’s friend

    SIMPLY, SEBAT IS HERE , HE IS BIGGER THAN LIFE AS HE WAS…..i.e why you guys are barging……

    PEACE

  22. August 25, 2012 at 6:47 pm | #27

    sebhat is greatest writer ever in modern ethiopian literature,pls just read a book ‘ye sebehat hiwotena kihilot’ by alemayehu gelagay and then judge sebehat.

  23. August 25, 2012 at 6:50 pm | #28

    Pls just read a book ‘ye sebehat hiwotena kihilot’ by alemayehu gelagay and then judge sebehat.

  24. Berhanu
    December 11, 2012 at 3:21 pm | #29

    Arefe, can you ask teddy if has wrote this poem then ?

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