“if you were born with the weakness to fall you were born with the strength to rise”
Milk and Honey | Rupi Kaur
Where do I start?
Really, where do I start?
With this maybe:
That’s how I felt reading Milk and Honey. It was and still is a struggle not to post all the pages of that book everywhere!
How We Met
I subscribe to The Read Club but I don’t quite follow their schedule. You see, I have a reading list of my own that seems to only grow longer with so few books ticked off and sometimes, I just pick something that’s not even on the list.
I don’t get it either.
When TRC read this, I was probably reading something else and only when I saw the reception on my TL, did I shortlist it to read. I finished yet another reading of Americanah last week and hopped immediately on Milk and Honey and I loved it! It put into words things I have thought of but not known how to explain.
Now that I’m doing this, I’m reading it again. I don’t know, I don’t know. I haven’t fallen that hard for a book in a long while.
In the middle of my day, since I read it, thoughts filter into my mind spurred by that book. I shamelessly advocated that all my friends read it so if I haven’t talked to you about Milk and Honey, you’re not my friend. (iKid. Or not.)
I said to a friend while I was reading it that “I just started it but it’s so easy to read but so meaningful. The words and the presentation seem so easy and simple. Almost basic but what’s being said, 👌🏾👌🏾👌🏾”
I’m pretty sure I disturbed my TL that evening and the next day.
An excerpt is currently my Twitter header.
What can I say? When I love, I love hard.
A Proper Introduction
milk and honey is a new york times bestseller. it is rupi kaur’s debut collection of poetry and prose. it was first self published in november 2014. the self published edition quickly became a bestseller as it topped north american charts. its grassroots success lead to andrews mcmeel publishing releasing it under their name on october 6 2015.
‘milk and honey’ is the experience of violence. abuse. love. loss. femininity. the book is divided into four chapters (which are the hurting, the loving, the breaking, the healing. They outline what the poems in them are about). each chapter serves a different purpose. deals with a different pain. heals a different heartache. milk and honey takes readers through a journey of the most bitter moments in life and finds sweetness in them because there is sweetness everywhere if you are just willing to look.
‘milk and honey’ as a recipe book for healing. making milk and honey the main ingredients.the milk is smooth. cooling. the honey is sweet. warming. the two of them combined creates a perfect balance.
Rupi Kaur = Talent unplugged!
“her passion is expression. she just uses different mediums at different times to do so. and poetry is just one of those mediums. along with it she dabbles in illustrating, design, photography, videography, and creative direction. it’s a career that’s led her to performing spoken word across the world while also facilitating writing workshops. but all her work engages with themes of femininity, love, loss, trauma, and healing. at times it is a composition of personal tales and in others, the experiences she encounters through life and travel.”
I found ‘period.’, a photo series developed by Rupi Kaur for a visual rhetoric course in her final year at university, to also be shocking but remarkable. “the goal was to challenge a taboo, tell a story without the use of words.”
I could relate with maybe a bit too much of it but more than that, it was different – an exercise in unlearning not only behavioural and cultural norms and ideas but also, ideas drummed into us about what good literature/art is.
I mean, this book is so real, honest, raw and deep. If you’ve ever felt like poetry was too complicated, distant and unreal – read this. It’s an easy and enjoyable read although sometimes it may break especially at the realisation that she and many other women probably go through this.
The use of lower case and so little punctuation which would have seemed too simple and basic instead drove home the message without “the drama of big words and grand style” because language after all is but a tool. I think this ties in with what I was saying in “Your Art is Yours”. The squiggly doodly illustrations were pretty fun too.
Please read Milk and Honey because I really cannot share it all. Yes, I am now begging.
Confession for today: I know that surely, God who created me and has begun His good work in and through me will continue to perfect and complete it.
If you’re reading this, then you got to the end and this wasn’t too clumsy for you to manoeuver. I really did try to shorten and structure it but I also wanted to share parts of the book in case you don’t get around to reading it and to convince you to go read it.
Light and love,