I need not introduce who Rupi Kaur is! This wordsmith has taken the internet by storm with the strength of her words and her talent. I was absolutely clueless why the hullabaloo about Rupi Kaur’s debut poetry book. With controversies galore, this book made it to my TBR. After having relished it, I realize why the hullabaloo.
So without much ado, let’s get into the review of this book.

The book is divided into four themes namely, the hurting, the loving, the breaking, the healing. Here we can see the balance the author has tried to maintain.

The hurting has some absolutely hurtful and sentimental poems. Poetess is quite verbose about the hurt, being hurt and hurting.

trying to convince myself
i am allowed
to take up space
is like writing with
my left hand
when i was born
to use my right

our knees
pried open
by cousins
and uncles
and men
our bodies touched
by all the wrong people
that even in a bed full of safety
we are afraid

The loving part is mild and dipped in honey. It is beautiful the way the author has amalgamated natural elements and the emotion of love.

my favorite thing about you is your smell
you smell like
a little more
human than the rest of us

you’ve touched me
without even
touching me

how do you turn
a forest fire like me
so soft i turn into
running water

The breaking is more like hurting however it is also about realization which leaves you broken.

don’t mistake
salt for sugar
if he wants to
be with you
he will
it’s that simple

more than anything
i want to save you
from myself

The healing has many inspiring work by Kaur. It is one part that I fell in love with.

the thing about writing is
i can’t tell if it’s healing
or destroying me

I found some of the poems quite raw and savage. The poetess is explicit in conveying her thoughts and is comfortable with the nakedness of language and of the words used. For instance, “you have spent enough nights
with his manhood curled inside your legs
to forget what loneliness feels like.

Sometimes her words are heart peircing and sharp like a butcher’s knife.

i didn’t leave because
i stopped loving you
i left because the longer
i stayed the less
i loved myself

In some cases she is succinct yet sweet.

i am a museum full of art
but you had your eyes shut

She handles all the emotions subtly but the words are so raw that they stay with you for a long time.

people go
but how
they left
always stays

Sometimes she is crude and realistic.

i am water
soft enough
to offer life
tough enough
to drown it away

And there are many instances when she makes you ponder.

you leave
but you don’t stay gone
why do you do that
why do you
abandon the thing you want to keep
why do you linger
in a place you do not want to stay
why do you think it’s okay to do both
go and return all at once

She gives away lessons without giving away too much.

the way they
tells you

at the end of the day all this
means nothing
this page
where you’re sitting
your degree
your job
the money
nothing even matters
except love and human connection

She shames body shaming with subtlety and makes us fall in love with our body!

accept yourself
as you were designed

The book is peppered with pictures of vagina, of naked figures embracing, of a man going down on woman, it is unusual to find such pictures. It is so open yet casual yet evoking uncanny emotions.

And she signs off with a heartwarming acknowledgement letter for her readers which brought a smile to my face.

Overall, it was a good read. The healing part was more feel good and turned out to be my favourite.

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Publishers: Andrews McMeel
Available: Amazon, Flipkart, In-store