Poem of Courage & Strength

Ellen J. Barrier

Published Author
Creative Writer
Medical Professional
Spirituality Counselor

Still I Rise    
by Maya Angelou

You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may trod 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 backyard.

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
I rise
Up from a past that's rooted in pain
I rise
I'm a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.

Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
I rise
Into a daybreak that's wondrously clear
I rise
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
I rise
I rise
I rise.

About This Poet:

Angelou, Maya
born April 4, 1928, St. Louis, Mo., U.S.
Name original:  Marguerite Johnson.
   Maya Angelou is an  American poet  whose several volumes of autobiography explore the themes of economic, racial, and sexual oppression.  She is a very dear friend of Oprah Winfrey, and many others. Ms. Angelou, is a well know poet. Her work is most appreciated by many who have read her poems. They offer hope, courage, and strength.  I am among those who appreciate and  value her work. 
Still I Rise, is one of my favorite poems.

 Maya Angelou 
Other Well Known autobiographical work

 I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (1970). Subsequent volumes of autobiography include Gather Together in My Name (1974), Singin' and Swingin' and Gettin' Merry Like Christmas (1976), The Heart of a Woman (1981), and All God's Children Need Traveling Shoes (1986).

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