The Sun & Her Flowers by Rupi Kaur

I’m sure you’ve seen some of Rupi Kaur’s poetry all over your social media and it’s probably made you cry. Or at the very least, pulled at your heart strings just a little bit. Unless you’re the Grinch or that guy who says ‘Bah Humbug’ during the holiday season every year.

Rupi Kaur writes poems on everything from being an immigrant to falling in love to being victim to sexual violence & incest. Her stuff is powerful, poignant, and gut wrenching at the same time. I read her first book, Milk and Honey, earlier this year and thought this second novel of hers would be a similar gut punch. While it was, I wasn’t expecting to have nightmares, flashbacks, and an unexpected catharsis at the end of it.

She’s blunt in her diagnosis of being a child of immigrants and how strenuous it was on her parents to come somewhere new and with a significant language barrier. Her work is novel in its simplicity and it’s no shocking development that The Sun & Her Flowers is yet again a bestseller for Kaur. Her pieces are short, sweet, and to the point. They pack a punch harder than Tyson and Mayweather combined but with the virality of something you can’t stop thinking about it, even when you don’t want to.

Kaur is brilliant. Her work came to success thru social media and the day & age where we passionately look for something to cling to when we’re so unsure mentally and politically. For me at least, Kaur put my own pain and triumph into words. She made things in my past come to light and made me face them head on not because I was afraid but because I was ready to tackle them. I wasn’t alone after reading her work and I’m beyond thankful for that.

Whenever somebody can take trauma into words that are poignant and not condescending, I’m in awe. And i’m thankful for the addition to the ever changing conversation. With the ever growing need for the arts, especially poetry, we need authors and poets like Rupi Kaur to be unashamed in their past and vigilante in their futures.

Be warned, this book is frank in its discussion of sexual violence, abuse, and immigration. If you’re in a spot where you can read about this subject matter, please do. It will take your breath away but it will bring you back to center all in the same cover to cover.

Favourite poem: I woke up thinking the work was done/I would not have to practice today/how naive to think healing was that easy/when there is no end point/no finish line to cross/healing is everyday work 

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