The book The Rose that Grew from Concrete is a collection of poetry from the late 80’s to early 90’s from Tupac Shakur’s personal journal. This collection helps you understand what Shakur was going through during those years with all the ups and downs in his life. He talks about his emotions through his poetry, so the reader can have a feel for him. In his poem, “Sometimes I Cry,” my favorite, Shakur expresses how he felt alone even at the peak of his career:
Sometimes when I’m alone
Cause I am on my own.
The tears I cry are bitter and warm.
They flow with life but take no form
I Cry because my heart is torn.
I find it difficult to carry on.
If I had an ear to confide in,
I would cry among my treasured friend,
but who do you know that stops that long,
to help another carry on.
The world moves fast and it would rather pass by.
Then to stop and see what makes one cry,
so painful and sad.
I find this interesting because you would figure a popular person like Shakur wouldn’t be dealing with loneliness or even looking for a friend that will listen to his emotions when he feels this way. Most people would figure that Shakur is this really tough gang member, and he would never have real emotion towards himself. But he is very motivational with some of his poems. Like in “The Eternal Lament,” he gives you motivation with, “I am not a perfectionist. But still I seek perfection.” In my opinion, this book was great because of all the emotion in this poetry, made by arguably the best rapper of all time. This book will be perfect for people who love music or poetry because his music is a combination of his poems. The title, The Rose that Grew from Concrete, is named after one of his songs featuring Nikki Giovanni, so that is something the reader can look into after reading this book.
If I were to rank this book, I’d give it an 8.5 out of 10.