Bullying is one of the biggest social problems facing our society, and the saying "Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me" not only is a cliché but also has been proved to be false. Words can indeed have a lingering effect on people's lives beyond their childhood.
Canadian poet Shane Koyczan brings to life his feelings about how bullying affected him in a new video that is going viral. Koyczan, previously known for his performance at the opening ceremony of the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, combined the words of his poem "To This Day" with 20-second segments from different animators and motion artists.
The seven-minute video recounts some of Koyczan's haunting childhood memories. Each moment is a poignant reminder of the pain he felt being alone and also the pain that he shared with a childhood companion who was also the victim of bullying.
The video was posted to YouTube only a couple of days ago, and it already has been viewed more than one million times and counting. Many commenters are comparing the poem to their own childhood experiences. One person wrote, "All the old memories come rushing back. Part of me wants to cry, but the bigger part wants to shout a victorious roar. A wonderful work of poetry Mr. Koyczan."
[Related: The pain of bullying lasts into adulthood]