Back in school, poetry never made much sense to me. Milton, Keats, Shelly—they all felt the same and went right over my head. If I had to write a poem, the last word of each line had to rhyme with that of the next. I’m kind of embarrassed to admit that I haven’t gotten any better at understanding poetry since. Thankfully, I no longer try to write poems, even though the itch is there sometimes.
But I haven’t given up on poetry altogether. Spoken word poetry and occasional stanzas at the beginning of various books have managed to keep alive the hope that one day it will all make perfect sense. In the meanwhile, I’m glad there are some poets who already do.
Gill mostly writes about womanhood and feminism and her poems challenge the conventional notion of what it means to be a woman. Her poems about life, loss, and being strong in general will have you nodding, saying, “Yes, that’s it… that’s exactly how I feel.” Her poems are what are going on in your head, you just hadn’t been able to put it in words. Reading her, for me, is an extremely calming and cathartic experience. It makes me realize my experiences and issues aren’t unique and, in that way, feel less lonely. If you are already a fan of Rupi Kaur then you will definitely love Gill’s empowering poems. ‘Wild Embers’ and ‘Fierce Fairytales’ are my favorites of all Gill’s books. You don’t have to read them in one sitting; you can keep them on your shelf and dip in and out whenever you feel like.
Instagram sensation, the anonymous and mask-donning Atticus has fans in stars like Shay Mitchell and Karlie Kloss. Dubbed as the #1 poet to follow by Teen Vogue and the “World’s most tattoo-able poet” by Galore magazine, Atticus has two books out with Simon & Schuster—‘Love Her Wild’, and ‘The Dark Between Stars’—both of which have received raving reviews. Readers are however divided on Atticus. Not everyone loves him, or even likes him. Some find his work painfully mediocre. But reading Atticus will make you think about love and relationships in a way you hadn’t before. I wouldn’t say all his poems are exceptional but I am particularly fond of how his books are designed with interesting, full-page black-and white-digital art and photos. They give you a moment to wonder and ponder.
Called the “Millennial Oprah”, Wade has over 685,000 followers on Instagram. Her book ‘Heart Talk: Poetic Wisdom for a Better Life’ is full of positive little nuggets that warm your heart. The small, square book, that you can easily slip into your pocket or purse, is branded as self-help rather than poetry. If you have ever wanted an instruction manual for life, this is it. Her words have also been used in advertisements for Gucci’s Chime for Change campaign, stenciled on Nike AF1 sneakers, and inscribed on designer dishes. Wade’s short, fragmented poems are little important thoughts in our head that, burdened by daily life and its hundreds of hassles, have been shoved at the very back.