As poet Rupi Kaur continues her American tour of Europe, her words continue to reverberate in the lives of millions. His writings on emotional abuse in relationships and negative self-perceptions have impacted life on a personal level and represent the truth that we, as human beings, are never alone.
His first book,milk and honeywas published over seven years ago on November 4, 2014 and impacted countries around the world. Her groundbreaking poems – often two to three lines long – are accompanied by illustrations and trace the journey from an abusive relationship to learning to love each other again. Its first publication was followed by a second, third and fourth book entitled “the sun and its flowers”, “the body at home” and “healing by words”.
So what does this have to do with you?
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In a article writing on the Mental State of America, it is said that between April 2020 and April 2021, symptoms of depression and anxiety increased from 11% to 40% and have not yet decreased. Growing numbers like these have been attributed to the COVID-19 pandemic, an increase in gun violence and an increase in screen time. These current statistics affect people like you and me, as well as Rupi Kaur.
Kaur writes situations that allow us to see through a window of her life. It’s as if being able to connect with someone who has come through and healed tumultuous times is an example that we readers can do the same. In an hour of PBS news interview, Kaur said, “I think people just want to feel understood and feel seen. That’s what I want growing up. And that’s why I think poetry works so well.
As readers’ hands flip through the pages of her books, Kaur takes them through experiences of grief, immigration, racism and sexism. Kaur speaks for those without a voice, expressing how to love each other through it all. His thoughts in his writing are thoughts that should be heard by millions.
And people are listening.
Kaur is an example of a writer who was able to reach a wide range of people with social media, which is often claimed to have been the reason for his rise to fame. To date, Kaur has 4.5 million followers on Instagram, an increase from her 3 million in 2018.
It is a known, stereotypical fact that for a person to be a poet, dreams of owning a yacht or living in a mansion are irrelevant. Even TS Elliot, one of the greatest poets of the 20th century, worked 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in a foreign transactions department to make ends meet.
Kaur proves these stereotypes wrong. By bringing it net value up to $1.2 million, she is one of the few poets who has been able to create a comfortable lifestyle for herself through the power of her writing alone.
The stigma around mental health seems to be slowly diminished every day by people like Rupi Kaur, and I hope it can inspire the continued normalization of self-healing for people like you and me growing up. in this world.
Carolyn Marshall (she/her) is a second year Media Studies majoring in Film, Television and Digital Production with a minor in English.