Canadian Poet Accused Of Ripping Off Tupac Shakur

A Canadian poet has been accused of ripping off the late rapper Tupac Shakur.

Pierre DesRuisseaux, who died last year, seems to have been a little too inspired by Tupac’s poem “Sometimes I Cry.”

Translated from French, DesRuisseaux’s poem “When I’m Alone” reads:

Sometimes when I’m alone I cry

Because I’m alone.

The tears I cry are bitter and burning.

They flow with life, they do not need reason.

Those words are almost identical to Tupac’s.

Sometimes when I’m alone I cry

Because I’m on my own

The tears I cry are bitter and warm

They flow with life but take no form

British poet Ira Lightman says DesRuisseaux’s 2013 book Tranches de vie is mostly a collection of translations of the works of others — including Maya Angelou and Dylan Thomas — without attribution.

DesRuisseaux won the Governor General’s Award for French-language poetry in 1989 and was a former Canadian poet laureate.

Montreal-based publisher Éditions du Noroît has reportedly pulled the book from sale.