Poetry is defined as literary work in which special intensity is given to the expression of feelings and ideas by the use of distinctive style and rhythm. Although many may dismiss popular modern poetry as too simplistic, amateur work, the collections of poetry from these young people of color truly exemplify artistic writing and bring justice to the definition.
1. Nikita Gill
Born in India, now living in London, Nikita Gill primarily writes on empowerment. Her poems incorporate tones of healing, social justice, gender roles and stresses the importance of unconditionally embracing oneself. Her two published books, Your Soul Is A River and Wild Embers: Poems of Rebellion, Fire and Beauty, both earned over four stars on Goodreads.
2. Lang Leav
As an international best seller and recipient of a Goodreads Choice Best Poetry Award, Leav has published five books, one fiction, and the rest filled with her poetry collections about affection, pain, beautiful revelations, harsh reality and more.
3. Azra Tabassum
At the shockingly young age of 20, as a Bangladeshi English student in the South Coast of England, Azra Tabassum elegantly composed and published Shaking the Trees—rated four stars—vividly taking her readers on a journey of her own emotions, twisting theirs as a result. Reviews describe her style of poetry as natural and raw, very clearly recognizing her skill now and acknowledging potential. Admire and keep up with her art on Tumblr.
4. Warsan Shire
With poetry featured in Beyoncé’s visual album Lemonade, Warsan Shire could not have established the proficient skill of her craft any more efficiently. Also holding a Brunel University African Poetry Prize, Shire’s work should be celebrated with even more popularity. The complex diction and imagery of her poetry stands out so intensely, regardless of the subject matter at hand. Her published books include Teaching My Mother How To Give Birth, Her Blue Body, The Pity and Penguin Modern Poets 3: Your Family, Your Body. Keep up with her work by following her on Twitter.
“Give your daughters difficult names. Give your daughters names that command the full use of tongue. My name makes you want to tell me the truth. My name doesn’t allow me to trust anyone that cannot pronounce it right.”
– Warsan Shire
5. Nayyirah Waheed
Last, but in no remote way least, to end this list of stunning young poets is Nayyirah Waheed. Nayyirah’s book salt. is deservingly adored by many, though not enough. Calling forward cultural appropriation, expressing emotions across the entire spectrum and unapologetically embracing femininity and black culture is how she deeply engages her readers within her work.
“She resonates in the clearest most shattering form.” – Yrsa Daley-Ward
Writing about the world from her specific perspective—as a woman of color—has proven to accentuate the voice poetry provides her; which is why Nayyirah, along with the other poets mentioned, should excite every reader for the future of powerful and diversely written art.