Suffering is universal. This has been the hard truth for everyone during the past year, when COVID-19 pandemic reached its long arm worldwide. “No human has been left untouched by the devastation and the chaos” felt by the Coronavirus pandemic. As someone who was considered high-risk, Nikita Gill wrote where Hope Comes From to cope with her feelings of uncertainty and loneliness during these unprecedented times.
“I want you to know that no matter what you are going through, no matter how big and deep and painful those feelings are, you are not alone.”—Nikita Gill
These poems seek to rebuild hope. “I wrote poems, mantras, affirmations, reasons to live”, and they help us to see that we are not alone. Despair can make way for happiness, and beauty can be found In togetherness. By exploring the life and rebirth of stars, Gill found what she was looking for.
Gill wants her readers to understand that just as there are five stages of grief, there are also five stages of hope. The poems explore the five phases of grief in order to illustrate the five stages of hope. Moving from poems like Black Hole (Despair) to Supernova (Reflection) and Nebula (Rebirth), we are able to see the light at the end of the tunnel.
The first poem sets the tone for the collection:
that if you change your thoughts,
you, too, can change your universe.
There are daily mantras and Reminders From the Stars:
Even at your loneliest, there is someone in this world feeling exactly what you are. There is comfort in this, if you let it in.
There are still people who love you, even if you cannot see them right now.
Some poems echo famous works of literature, like Plague Year and Love in the Time of Coronavirus. Others reflect on Kindness, some look for Silver Linings. There are funny references to the ways this generation coped with COVID, like Baking Banana Bread as the World Ends, which I think we can all relate to. There are Lessons on Love, and Reminders from Smaller Beings, advice on How To Deal with a Painful Experience.
So, where exactly does hope come from? It “comes from standing together against evil. It comes from chaos—rediscovery of truth, understanding loneliness and self-compassion, too.” These poems create a space for us all to relate and come together, but most importantly they send us messages of hope.
Nikita Gill is a British-Indian writer and poet living in the south of England. With a huge online following, her words have entranced hearts and minds all over the world. Follow her on Instagram at @nikita_gill or on twitter at @nktgill.