by Rupi Kaur
Around the World: Canada
How obtained: birthday gift
This best selling book of poetry by Rupi Kaur, is broken into 4 sections: “the hurting”, “the loving”, “the breaking”, and “the healing”. It is written from the point of view of a young woman who has experienced abuse, but is able to love passionately and embrace her sexuality as an adult. A break up is felt deeply, but she finds peace and joy anyway.
I am not quite sure what the term is for the type of poems that are in the book: some are just a few words, others a sentence or two broken up across lines of the page, and occasionally they are a full paragraph. They do not rhyme.
In my mind, none of the poems are in themselves a great poem. As I said, many are just a few words; the beginnings of an idea. But together they make up a cohesive whole. I think it would be more accurate to think of the whole book as one poem or work, which happens to be spread out across multiple pages.
Furthermore, I think that this is an example of the popularity of a work being not just the work itself, but the whole package- the author is involved in many artistic endeavours, and is active in social media and blogging about her art and feminism. She had a menstruation related photo taken town from instagram, and her response and situation went viral- creating a situation where her life and her body itself was a comment on feminist issues, not just her poetry.
While there is a part of me which always feels that this type of poetry is cheating in some way (you write 7 words and can say you are done), I think it is worth reading, as a good, honest, unashamed depiction of one woman’s inner working.