It is International Women’s Day! No, we won’t say a trite ‘Happy Women’s Day’. Instead let’s celebrate the fact that so many of us are using our writing to speak up for women. Rupi Kaur is one such woman – a woman who writes bravely!
Perhaps you remember her as the girl who posted a photograph of a fully clothed woman lying in bed with a period stain. This was part of her project to break the taboo around periods. But when Instagram deleted it stating that it went against their community norms, Rupi Kaur wrote this.
Their misogyny is leaking. Their patriarchy is leaking. We will not be censored.
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i bleed each month to help make humankind a possibility. my womb is home to the divine. a source of life for our species. whether i choose to create or not. but very few times it is seen that way. in older civilizations this blood was considered holy. in some it still is. but a majority of people. societies. and communities shun this natural process. some are more comfortable with the pornification of women. the sexualization of women. the violence and degradation of women than this. they cannot be bothered to express their disgust about all that. but will be angered and bothered by this. we menstruate and they see it as dirty. attention seeking. sick. a burden. as if this process is less natural than breathing. as if it is not a bridge between this universe and the last. as if this process is not love. labour. life. selfless and strikingly beautiful.
Her powerful words caused Instagram to reinstate the photograph and apologize to her.
Kaur has been sharing on Instagram her poems about love, womanhood and taking care of oneself since 2014. These tiny bits of affirmation and wisdom together with her simple line drawings have made her an Instagram hit. However, she is more than an InstaPoet. Rupi Kaur is a #1 New York Times bestselling author and illustrator of two collections of poetry. Her first collection of poems ‘Milk and Honey’ was published in 2014. The internationally acclaimed collection sold well over a million copies. It has since been translated into over thirty languages. Her second collection ‘The Sun and Her Flowers’ was published in 2017.
Today I want to share with you a few of her posts on Instagram.
Rupi Kaur on Instagram
language is powerful. the words you use on yourself are powerful. when these words you use are laced with negativity you rot from the inside out. you birth self harm and self hatred. so speak to yourself in the kind and soft way you’d speak to a parent. lover. friend. and you will begin to foster growth. you are alive and you are able. that is miracle enough. you are breathing and you are ready. be kind to yourself to prosper 🌻
Rupi Kaur truly is breaking down barriers, creating new forms of expression, uniting people internationally through love and pain and ultimately using her platform to talk about issues that matter.