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.
This beautiful poem was sent to me by my friend Dark Writer (https://www.facebook.com/TheDarkWriterProject?pnref=lhc0), thus introducing me to a wonderful woman called Maya Angelou. My curiosity was picked, so I googled her a little and found out that not only was she a poet, but she was also an author and was one of Martin Luther King’s Coordinators and active in the Civil Rights movement in the USA. She has a series of autobiographical volumes which I am now dying to put my hands on. Even more so now that I’ve read some of them are banned from some US schools and libraries. Seriously, USA, what’s up with banning books from schools? Afraid they are going to change people’s hearts and minds?
I hope you like the poem as much as I did.