Bookish Week: Helium by Rudy Francisco

Rudy Francisco takes us on a life-changing experience through his words. Helium is his debut book published in November 2017, and it covers both political and personal poems. I think everyone should read it, as his work is for the "new generation of readers."

It is such an enigmatic book! As I was reading, I got sucked in by the rawness of what was written on the piece of paper—or, more accurately, my phone screen. This book will make you reflect on the topics he discusses, and by the time you finish the book, you will want more.



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The book is divided into four chapters. The first chapter covers personal life poems. In one of them, called "My Honest Poem," he talks about himself, what makes Rudy Francisco him, then he goes on talking about how he isn't good in relationships. Other poems he dedicates to seemingly random people such as his poem "To the Girl who works at Starbucks, Down from the Street from My House on Del Mar Heights Road, I Swear to God I'm Not a Stalker." Yes, the title is that long and, as  it suggests, the poem is beautifully funny, he talks about a girl he saw working in a Starbucks and shows his insecurities on how to talk to her,


"When I asked you for a chai latte, 

what I meant to say was:

'I was walking past. I saw you in the window.

I only came in here because I had to know what your voice sounded like.'

But instead of saying that, I got really nervous

and I just ordered the first thing on the menu.

I don't even know what 'chai' is.

Or a latte, for that matter.

I imagine, when God made you,

he cussed for the first time. He turned to an angel,

gave him a high five and said: 'Goddamn, I'm good!'

You are that beautiful. I spent the last five days

trying to figure out how I'm going to introduce myself

to you properly, and I think I've finally figured it out.

It's going to be something like… 'Hi.'

That's all I got so far, but I think it's a good start."


This chapter ends with the beginning of the second chapter, "Love."

Rudy talks about a broken heart, it is not clear whether it's his, but still, you can connect with his words, the heart we've all had broken at some point, and the struggle to make it whole again.



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A poem that I really like is one in the last chapter titled "Complainers." To keep it brief,  he talks about how we complain about a daily basis about things that are so insignificant that we still choose to worry about them and complain because others have it better than us.

He starts with experiences from people who have gone through life and death experiences. He writes, "The most amazing part of these stories is when asked about the experience, they all smiled, shrugged and said 'I guess things could've been worse.'"

I discovered Rudy Francisco on YouTube; the way he performed the poems, the tone, it was like he was speaking directly to me. Watching the performances made reading the book a much better experience. I highly recommend this poetry book for anyone who wants to feel inspired and impacted.  

So hop on the poetry train and buy a copy of the e-book.  Make sure to tell your friends how amazing this book is!