Annotated Bibliographies ; Collections of Poetry

Kaur, Rupi. “The Sun and Her Flowers”. Andrews McMeel Publishing. October 3, 2017.

“The sun and her flowers”, by Rupi Kaur, is a collection of poetry structured in a specific order to create an effect on the reader using rhythm.The book talks about grief, self-abandonment, love, honoring one’s “roots”, and empowering oneself. She divides these themes into five chapters which she titles them wilting, falling, rooting, rising, and blooming. The book is filled with short poems starting with the first chapter “Wilting”, this chapter includes poems describing the narrator trying to move on from a relationship while still being in love with the person who left. She describes her life to be sad and lonely without this person and finds it extremely difficult to readjust, making the audience feel sorry or sympathetic for the narrator. As the book progresses each chapter describes her slowly healing and the hardships that came with it, as if the audience is growing and experiencing it all with her. She uses a lot of symbolism in her book starting with the flowers in the title. Then symbolizing her healing process as the stages of a growing flower, which are also the names of each chapter. Not only did she make the book physically appealing to readers by dividing each life experience by growing phases, giving the reader options between chapters.  But made the audience feel a sense of growing or changing throughout the book.

Kaur, Rupi. “Milk and Honey”. Andrews McMeel Publishing. November 4, 2014.

“Milk and Honey” is another collection of poetry structured in a specific order to create an effect on the reader using rhythm, by Rupi Kaur that talks about the experience of violence, abuse, love, loss, and femininity. These experiences are split into four chapters, all with short poems serving  a different purpose. The four chapters are titled ‘the hurting’, ‘the loving’, ‘the breaking’, and ‘the healing’. The book starts off with poems describing an experience involving sexual abuse and broken relationships. She portrays the childhood of a girl who was raped and left hopeless, and the destruction it caused. Kaur lets her emotions flow freely as if the words are pouring out from her heart rather than her mind. In “the hurting”, it is described that the pain being felt is deep within the heart of the victim and shatters their purity. “The loving” shifts the tone of the book, as the poems become intimate and sensual, she describes the power love has to change the soul completely. “The breaking and “The healing” go hand in hand both describing the journey of heartbreak to happiness. She is aware of her younger audience, a group of lovers who may have been abandoned and broken for the first time. The pain is told with innocence and passion, making it relatable for the readers. Finally, the speaker encourages readers to feel a sense of beauty and radiance within themselves and the meaning of independence and identity. Despite the change in subject matter, Kaur maintains her voice and keeps the rhythm of her poems short and simple.

Robinson, K.Y. “The Chaos of Longing”. Andrew McMeel Publishing. September 26, 2017.

“The Chaos of Longing”, by K.Y Robinson, is a poetry collection structured in a specific order to create an effect on the reader using rhythm. The book explores what it is to want in spite of trauma, shame, injustice, and mental illness. She organizes these topics into four chapters and titles them ‘Inception’, ‘Longing’, ‘Chaos’, and ‘Epiphany’. In the chapter ‘Inception’ she explains her need for affection and affirmation that someone needs her due to feeling unappreciated by her parents. In ‘Longing’ she describes the foundation of the relationships being made were built in lust instead of love. Along the way she felt alone and questioned if God gave up on her, making the readers feel sympathy for her. ‘Chaos’ was a chapter of realization, she finally saw how messed up love could be. She shows how finally moving on was a lot scarier than being used to the heartbreak it caused her. Finally, in the last chapter ‘Epiphany’ there was a change in tone, it was time for change and take action. She got tired of denying that all she needed was self-love and to know her worth more than anyone or anything. This collection of poems don’t just tell a story but takes the reader through a journey that was personal and powerful to the author. She allows the reader to know her, invading her private space and thoughts and be a part of her road trip to self-love. 

Cook, Alicia. “The Stuff I’ve Been Feeling Lately”. Andrew McMeel Publishing. April 11, 2017

“The Stuff I’ve Been Feeling Lately”, by Alicia Cook, is a collections of poems structured in a specific order to create an effect on the reader using rhythm.It is designed like an old-school mixtape. The book is broken up into two parts side A and side B. Side A features poems talking about the aspects of the human conditions such as life, death, love, trauma and growth. It covers a variety of different topics and experiences without feelings all over the place. Not only does she provide short poems but a soundtrack along with them. After every poem she includes a song that she had listened to, giving the book a personal feel similar to a diary. The songs also symbolize what the author was feeling when the words were written. Side B however is blackout poetry, which is where the author blacks out words from within a story to create another. In this case, the author used her poems from side A to recreate a haunting black-out remixes of those poems. The author makes her collections of poems not only creatively but relatable, symbolizing there’s always two sides to things and to remind you that your feelings are valid. 

Lovelace, Amanda. “The Princess Saves Herself In This One”. Andrew McMeel Publishing. February 14 ,2017

“The Princess saves herself in this one” ,by Amanda Lovelace, is a poetry collection structured in a specific order to create an effect on the reader using rhythm. The poems are about the authors important moments in her life and also the ‘weakest’. The book is broken down into four sections: the princess, the damsel, the queen, and you. The first section ‘the princess’ focuses on her early life where she takes the reader on a journey including how she developed a deep interest in books, her relationship with her mother and sister, her battle with an eating disorder and self harm, and her first kiss and the assault that followed. Lovelace didn’t fail on giving the reader a sense of bravery and courage when explaining her hardships. ‘The damsel’ contains more fairy tale analogies comparing her difficult experiences as dragons and the big bad wolf. This section really focuses on the power of self empowerment and rising from certain situations. ‘The Queen’ talks more about how she handles grief and what it feels like to fall in love with the right person. Finally in the section ‘You’, it consists of poems of encouragement and inspiration to the reader. Lovelace takes the reader on an emotional roller coaster filled with highs and lows from start to finish. She makes sure it’s clear to readers how different each section is and how each serves a different purpose by comparing her life moments to fairytale stereotypes.

Campbell, Courtney. “Pillow Thoughts”. Andrew McMeel Publishing. August 29, 2017

“Pillow thoughts”, by Courtney Peppernell is a collection of poems structured in a specific order to create an effect on the reader using rhythm.This collection is divided into ten different sections , no need to read them consecutively. They’re each intended to be read while the reader is in a particular state of mind. They all start in ‘If you are ..’ and there’s one for wistfulness, love, heartbreak, loneliness, sadness, emptiness, encouragement, soul-searching, finding reasons to live, and the final part is dedicated to her partner. Poets like Peppernell use very different metaphors to convey similar themes of heartbreak, self- love, inner strength, and finding beauty in the world around them. The author gave the reader not only the ability to read freely throughout the book ,with the consecutive storyline out the way, but  made the reader feel connected and validated. These poems are the sort that readers can truly relate to and each person’s interpretation will be different.

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