Title: Milk and Honey
Author: Rupi Kaur
Milk and Honey is a short book composed of poetry reflecting love, abuse, and courage. There are four chapters total with each chapter focusing on a different topic. This book has been praised as a feminist icon and is discussed in some university women’s studies classes. Its purpose is to give the readers a broader perspective while also instilling moments of connection and understanding.
“How is it so easy for you
to be kind to people he asked
milk and honey dripped
from my lips as i answered
cause people have not
been kind to me”
I was first introduced to Milk and Honey in one of my university courses where the assignment was to choose a book that reflected intersectionality and the challenges that being a part of multiple marginalized groups poses. For this assignment, I chose The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, but another student presented Milk and Honey. A lot of the poems that were presented were sad, but relatable. Especially for women in college where misogyny and abuse are unfortunately common. So, long story short, I saw this book as one of my suggested reads and decided it was time to give it a try.
I personally do not read much poetry so Rapi Kaur’s work was a welcomed challenge. Looking only at the surface, some of the pieces didn’t make sense to me or seemed too short. However, once I really started diving in deep and taking the time to decipher the meaning of each line, I found the strength in poems. They don’t need to be long passages. Instead, they tell you the whole story, emotions and all, in one small, beautiful expose. Poetry truly shows you the strength in choosing the right words to get your message across.
“You tell me to quiet down cause
my opinions make me less beautiful
but i was not made with a fire in my belly
so i could be put out
i was not made with a lightness on my tongue
so i could be easy to swallow
i was made heavy
half blade and half silk
difficult to forget
and not easy for the mind to follow”
Reading poetry was also really fun because it can be interpreted in more than one way. This somewhat allows you to personalize each piece and make it have meaning to you. With that being said, you don’t need to be a woman or a part of a marginalized group to read Milk and Honey. There are pieces in this book for everyone to enjoy. I included a couple of my favorite pieces from Milk and Honey in this review. This book was my first adult poetry book and I am sure it will not be my last.