Best Poetry Books To Read While In High School

By Cylee Drake

If you are looking for a light read or a book you can open to any page, poetry is the thing for you. Now, I am not talking about Shakespeare and Poe, not even Dickinson and Plath. I am talking poets who started out just like us. Some are just finishing college, others are so mysterious that no one knows anything about them, but what they all have in common is their passion for poetry. The following are some of the best poetry books to read while in high school.

No Matter The Wreckage by Sarah Kay

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This poetry novel by Sarah Kay is a collection of her writings from over a decade of her young adult life. She writes about family, love, and self-discovery. Kay is shares the hardships as well as the blessings she encountered in her life.  

Helium by Rudy Francisco

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Helium by Rudy Francisco takes a male perspective on relationships, love, and life. Francisco uses his writings to talk about his observations throughout life and how those observations shaped his view of the world. He touches on topics revolving around mental health, gender, and race.

Depression and Other Magic Tricks by Sabrina Benaim

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Sabrina Benaim’s novel Depression and Other Magic Tricks brings to light real life struggles that many face daily. She carries on a conversation of mental health and family. Benaim helps to bring a new viewpoint on the fight between mental health and stability.

New American Best Friend by Olivia Gatwood

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Olivia Gatwood tells the stories of her past with great craft in her novel New American Best Friend. She uses her ability of combining storytelling and poetry to address young adulthood and growing up in America as well as moving to a new country at a young age.

Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur

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Rupi Kaur’s first poetry novel is a beautiful collection of her poetry that touches on problems she has faced based on her gender, race, and ethnicity. This novel is divided into four chapters, the hurting, the loving, the breaking, and the healing, where she writes about violence, loss, love, family, and friends.

The Sun and Her Flowers by Rupi Kaur

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The sequel to Milk and Honey, Rupi Kaur’s second novel, The Sun and Her Flowers is just as good as her first novel. It covers raw emotions and real life experiences. It explores themes of self-love, relationships, and culture. Kaur takes the reader on the journey of a flower with her chapters wilting, falling, rooting, rising, and blooming.

We Will Be Shelter: Poems for Survival edited by Andrea Gibson

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This poetry novel is a collection of poetry from different poets including Sam Sax, Sarah Kay, and Andrea Gibson. It offers insight on issues students will encounter in the “real world.” Adulthood is scary enough, so this novel offers understanding and others’ stories on how they face their adult lives.

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