Sheila Khala – the pioneer of Lesotho poetry...
The pioneer of poetry in Lesotho….
Sheila Nomolanga Khala is one of the best-known poets from Lesotho. She is considered a "pioneer" of poetry in Lesotho and even founded a nationwide organization, Poetry is Alive. In addition, she is active in the South African poetry community.
Khala was born and raised in Khubetsoana, Lesotho. When she was in Form E at Adventville High School, she participated in the Poetry Farm contest, and was named Lesotho’s best poet.
In 2009, at the age of 19, she published her first book, Formula, which brought her new recognition in the Lesotho and South African poetry communities. After the launch of her first book, she moved to South Africa’s Free State province to study statistics at the University of the Free State and quickly became introduced to the poetry scene there, which she described as "enormous."
She stayed in South Africa for a while, performing in poetry shows and competitions across the country, before deciding to return home to Lesotho to nurture local poetry. She told the Lesotho Times:
"I am now working with Ultimate FM in trying to extract the raw poetry talent in high schools around Lesotho. It is part of my vision of educating, motivating and inspiring students in the use of English language. My third book will feature poems from those students. It will be called September: A Special Gift."