2Pac’s work holds a special place in the hearts of many, even after his passing. Over two decades after his passing, the words he spoke still ring true to the society we live in. While he’s inspired near two generations of artists and writers, the late Canadian parliament poet laureate, Pierre DesRuisseaux, is being accused of plagiarizing some of 2Pac’s work.
In a report from the National Post, poetry detective Ira Lightman has discovered that DesRuisseaux has lifted some of 2Pac’s poetry, among other poets, in one of his published books from 2013. The work that Pac did was from his poem “Sometimes I Cry” and was translated into his book as “When I’m Alone.” The similarities between the two poems are near identical.
On Pac’s “Sometimes I Cry” poem, it reads “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” where as DesRuisseux 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.”
As you could see the two are pretty much the same except DesRuisseux switched up a few words at the ending. While there are arguments from other academic experts that say that the plagiarism was unintentional, due to the fact that many authors who aren’t English will take others work to translate for their readers. However, DesRuisseux didn’t seem to even credit anyone’s work and was not only using famous authors work to translate but also the work of amateurs online, Lightman said.
DesRuisseux passed away in early 2016 and Lightman said that this discovery was made last year, however due to the fact that he did not want to upset the family, he didn’t expose the poet until U.K. newspaper The Guardian reached out to him pertaining to DesRuisseux’s work earlier this week.
The book has since been discontinued by it’s publisher, however Lightman believes that some sort of statement should be made regardless.
This news comes the same week as Tupac’s 21st death anniversary. September 13th marks the same day that the famed rapper, activist and actor died of respiratory failure due to the multiple gunshots he suffered in Las Vegas after attending a Mike Tyson boxing match.