I don’t remember which Maya Angelou poem it was,
but I heard voice.
The choice to sing out,
to align letters and sculpt mood.
Maya made rubies out of wood.
I heard a woman, stark, celebrating
though she’d been a slave,
bruises deep as ancestral scars;
Her stories brought out the
stars on an obsidian night.
She had the words to sing
though she’d been harmed.
She’d also been formed with love
and lumps of soft clay.
This woman had style, phenomenally.
Grace to look at the truth of things and smile;
such was her Hope.
She had sass and swing and enough spring to make
showers of thousands of powdery puffs
flit onto the sisters of her generation.
She commanded mesmerisation.
Ms. Angelou showed us elegance in cotton,
grandeur in the sweat of penning a memoir.
That a true-life-hymn could spring up from my soul.
That lonely words could be straightened out with Joy
and human rights.
She showed me swinging hips and education,
that writing that made me giggle and trust
all might be well in the morning.
She shared with me, Voice.
Here on the pulse of this new day
You may have the grace to look up and out
And into your sister’s eyes, into
Your brother’s face, your country
And say simply
Here is a video of her own gorgeous voice