Maya Angelou‘s prestige as a poet surpasses any critique and comment. Her voice was like milk and honey; if you heard it, you’d know who it was without even having to look at her face. Angelou was a writer, an actress, singer, and Civil Rights Activist. We know her best by her poetry, but she was much more than that. Angelou had power in her words. She knew pain and happiness and could bring those emotions to life through her work. She has been awarded many times over including the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2011 and over 50 honorary degrees. Her most famous book, I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings is both an autobiography and piece of literature.
Still I Rise
You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may tread me in the very dirt
But still, like dust, I'll rise.
Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
'Cause I walk like I've got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.
Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I'll rise.
Did you want to see me broken?
Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops.
Weakened by my soulful cries.
Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don't you take it awful hard
'Cause I laugh like I've got gold mines
Diggin' in my own back yard.
You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, I'll rise.
Does my sexiness upset you?
Does it come as a surprise
That I dance like I've got diamonds
At the meeting of my thighs?
Out of the huts of history's shame
Up from a past that's rooted in pain
I'm a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.
Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
Into a daybreak that's wondrously clear
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
Angelou passed in 2014. No documentary has ever been made about the poet until now. According to GalleyCat, it is set to be released October 14th. It’s called Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise.
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