Poetry Books You Need to Read if You Liked 'Milk and Honey'

Rupi Kaur’s book of poetry, "Milk and Honey" has become so popular that poetry is having a comeback. Her poetry, and that of other poets like her, grew popular online on Tumblr and Instagram and then quickly climbed to bestsellers once published in a physical book.

Kaur’s poetry is simplistic and usually very short, with no formal structure. Because of this, she and other poets like her are criticized as lazy and unskilled. Some say their poetry lacks depth for the sake of being popular. But Kaur clapped back to those criticisms saying that she values short poetry like her own because it is “accessible to the masses.” She also values that accessibility from the perspective of an immigrant, since simple poetry is easier to read and enjoy by people who do not speak English as a first language.

Thanks to Kaur, poetry is having a major comeback. If you enjoyed "Milk and Honey," you should check out these other contemporary poetry books:

1. Pillow Thoughts  – Courtney Peppernell

This book of poetry covers love, loss, loneliness and more. If you are okay with getting in your feels, then buckle in and give this one a read. Peppernell divides her poems into differently themed sections to fit whatever you’re feeling at the moment.

2. "The Rose That Grew from Concrete" – Tupac Shakur

This book of poetry was published after Tupac’s tragic death. The poems are deeply personal and showcase the talented artist’s versatile style.

3. "There are More Beautiful Things Than Beyoncé" – Morgan Parker

Parker covers the life of a modern woman in this collection. Her poems cover topics of politics, society and pop culture that will have you crying one moment and laughing the next.

4. "Depression and Other Magic Tricks" – Sabrina Benaim

This book grew in popularity almost overnight because of a video of Benaim’s performance of "Explaining My Depression to My Mother." Her poems open conversations on mental health, love and other important themes. I couldn’t put it down when I first read it.

5. "Citizen: An American Lyric" – Claudia Rankine

This book of poetry has won a lot of awards in the literary world. It is an eye-opening and provocative book on race and society in today’s world. It is a must read.

6. "Take Me With You" – Andrea Gibson

This book is small enough to fit in your pocket! It may be tiny, but the poems within pack a punch. Gibson explores her own queerness, gender, politics, love and much more with incredible honesty paired with beautiful illustrations.

7. "The Anatomy of Being" – Shinji Moon

This book is a beautiful exploration of life and love. Moon uses imagery of the body in her discussions on life in a really lovely way. This book is less well-known, but I highly suggest it just the same.

8. "The sun and her flowers" – Rupi Kaur

Of course, if you loved "Milk and Honey,", you should read Kaur’s second piece, "The Sun and Her Flowers." This collection has themes of growth, healing, and culture. Similar to Milk and Honey," it is divided into sections. I actually liked this book of poetry better than "Milk and Honey"  because I found her style to be improved and elevated while still holding the honesty and simplicity that made her first book so excellent.

There are so many more excellent books of contemporary poetry to read, but these are my personal favorites that I have read and that I think are similar to "Milk and Honey." I am so thankful that poetry is becoming more popular and accessible because it is such a unique and powerful form of art. I hope these books inspire you to continue exploring the world of poetry!