A Poem For Dr. Maya Angelou

Because I truly believe that it is best to give a woman her flowers when she still has the ability to see, feel, and smell them, this here poem is for you My most cherished and beloved Dr. Maya Angelou

With no need for introductions or unnecessary things At a young age you explained to me Why the Caged Birds Sings Stamped to silence More importantly you taught me why it invoked its right to remain quiet You had it right all along, your voice could move mountains and kill monsters figuratively because to give a young dream deferred a chance to succeed through literacy was a powerful thing I wanted to “enchant” myself like you “Relive the agony, the anguish, the Sturm und Drang” Every eloquent poem was a bittersweet memory sipped across pages with brewed paragraphs over explicit similes

I been trying to “tell the human truth” since I found you in my youth because there are still “helpless piglets awaiting slaughter” Houses just don’t seem as evident as they use to Folks done cleaned up the outside but it’s forever internally blue All God’s Children Need Traveling Shoes with Rituals of Peace and Prayer Singin’ and Swingin’ and Gettin’ Merry Like Christmas See I want to write a Letter To My Daughter But I’m afraid that I may never have her because there’s some buried chapters and solemn matters that I have yet to discover if poetry could heal Or heel Or… kill My assailant has never faced the firing squad and I reckon he never will Bastard didn’t even apologize

Through clipped wings and tied feet I found a song to sing So I took my rage to the page allowing the stage to become my cage Plagued journeys of Momma Welfare Rolls Still I Rise victoriously because you helped me to see the “obvious differences in the human family” I was able to fly free And my pen is still flowing

See I know your birthday hasn’t been the same since 1968 If you knew in the two weeks you sat in the concrete jungle “absent from yourself” that the life jacket you created would save more than yourself What if King had lived to see your dream… come true

I cried the entire time I saw you And you stood there weaving stories of past times as if you were talking to an old dear friend and I inhaled every part of you Walked away with a deeper understanding of the little nothings that create the something’s we must live through That’s A Brave and Startling Truth

“All great achievements require time” and now I know “When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time” Not all degrees require college for education Storm clouds will continue brewing and a house will never be a home alone If the tree, the pulse, and the morning could meet then surely love could arrive and survive memories of pleasure through ancient histories of pain

We still rising like the moon and them suns We still pushing tides across bruised heads and battered eyes Ain’t nothing changed about this black ocean Dr. Angelou it’s still leaping and wide But the rock found pride in its pod because it was Touched by An Angel from God… YOU So to the rock that cries out, tell him we’re free The Muslim The Catholic The Sheikh and the Jews Tell the Preachers The Privileged The Teachers, & The Feared that along the riverside we found FREEDOM It was inside our mind the entire time We simply had to open our mouths and sing

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