Maya angelou type of poetry

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Poems by Maya Angelou

What is it like to be a woman of colour with brilliant intellectual and linguistic power? Is it a blessing, is it a curse, is it both at the same time? Isnt it just being human, in the end?

Maya Angelous poems have accompanied my teaching for a very long time. Her direct, honest words fit any human rights discussions, any debates on racism and misogyny, any reflections on the distribution of wealth and power, privilege and entitlement. Her hopes and fears, her dreams and nightmares are the stuff that humans are made on. She gives everyday life an artistically powerful voice, speaking loudly and confidently from the corner of society that unfortunately still remains invisible or indifferent to those in power.

But Maya Angelou is more than just a writer speaking for those without words of their own. She celebrates love, anger, sadness, community and loneliness from the perspective of individual experience, putting a specific, unique person in focus rather than an underprivileged group. She finds beauty in self-confidence rather than prettiness, in effort rather than accomplishment, in dreams rather than status. Hers is a world that CAN BE - if you believe in yourself.

I will let her speak for herself, and hope her words help those of us who turned out a bit shy, or short, or insecure, or invisible, or overlooked, to grow an inch while reading:

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.
Im not cute or built to suit a fashion models size
But when I start to tell them,
They think Im telling lies.
I say,
Its in the reach of my arms
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
Im a woman
Phenomenal woman,
Thats me.

I walk into a room
Just as cool as you please,
And to a man,
The fellows stand or
Fall down on their knees.
Then they swarm around me,
A hive of honey bees.
I say,
Its the fire in my eyes,
And the flash of my teeth,
The swing in my waist,
And the joy in my feet.
Im a woman
Phenomenal woman,
Thats me.

Men themselves have wondered
What they see in me.
They try so much
But they cant touch
My inner mystery.
When I try to show them
They say they still cant see.
I say,
Its in the arch of my back,
The sun of my smile,
The ride of my breasts,
The grace of my style.
Im a woman

Phenomenal woman,
Thats me.

Now you understand
Just why my heads not bowed.
I dont shout or jump about
Or have to talk real loud.
When you see me passing
It ought to make you proud.
I say,
Its in the click of my heels,
The bend of my hair,
the palm of my hand,
The need of my care,
Cause Im a woman
Phenomenal woman,
Thats me.

Thats her. Shes phenomenal.
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Published 22.04.2019

Maya Angelou reads Human Family poem

Biography Newsletter

Maya Angelou was an American author, actress, screenwriter, dancer, poet and civil rights activist best known for her memoir, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings , which made literary history as the first nonfiction bestseller by an African American woman. Angelou received several honors throughout her career, including two NAACP Image Awards in the outstanding literary work nonfiction category, in and Angelou was born on April 4, , in St. Louis, Missouri. Angelou had a difficult childhood. Her parents split up when she was very young, and she and her older brother, Bailey, were sent to live with their father's mother, Anne Henderson, in Stamps, Arkansas. As an African American, Angelou experienced firsthand racial prejudices and discrimination in Arkansas.

Search more than 3, biographies of contemporary and classic poets. Maya Angelou was born Marguerite Johnson in St. Louis, Missouri, on April 4, She grew up in St. Louis and Stamps, Arkansas. She was an author, poet, historian, songwriter, playwright, dancer, stage and screen producer, director, performer, singer, and civil rights activist. In , at the request of Dr.

Maya Angelou , an African-American writer who is best known for her seven autobiographies , was also a prolific and successful poet. She has been called "the black woman's poet laureate", and her poems have been called the anthems of African Americans. She became a poet after a series of occupations as a young adult, including as a cast member of a European tour of Porgy and Bess , and a performer of calypso music in nightclubs in the s. Many of the songs she wrote during that period later found their way to her later poetry collections. She eventually gave up performing for a writing career. Despite considering herself a poet and playwright, she wrote Caged Bird in , which brought her international recognition and acclaim. Many of her readers consider her a poet first and an autobiographer second, but she is better known for her prose works.

Louis, Missouri , U.
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Angelou's use of fiction-writing techniques such as dialogue, characterization, and development of theme, setting, plot, and language has often resulted in the placement of her books into the genre of autobiographical fiction. Hagen places Angelou in the long tradition of African-American autobiography, but claims that Angelou created a unique interpretation of the autobiographical form. According to African-American literature scholar Pierre A. Walker, the challenge for much of the history of African-American literature was that its authors have had to confirm its status as literature before they could accomplish their political goals, which was why Angelou's editor Robert Loomis was able to dare her into writing Caged Bird by challenging her to write an autobiography that could be considered "high art". According to McWhorter, Angelou structured her books, which to him seem to be written more for children than for adults, to support her defense of black culture.

An acclaimed American poet, storyteller, activist, and autobiographer, Maya Angelou was born Marguerite Johnson in St. Louis, Missouri. As a civil rights activist, Angelou worked for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. By , wrote Carol E. Angelou was awarded over 50 honorary degrees before her death. Louis and Stamps, Arkansas, where she lived with her brother and paternal grandmother.

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