I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

Yesterday a great soul left this world. Maya Angelou died at 86.

There are so many famous people throughout history. People who’ve built cities, torn down walls, started wars, and others who brought peace. But there’s something about art and writing that is lasting. I’ve read a handful of quotes by her and each one of them affects me. There’s something about the written word that touches deep inside the spaces of your soul, to places that nothing else can reach. Words echo, resound and stay with you. Artist are immortal in that way. Their voices rise about the rubble, their art conquers time, they’ve distilled truth so plainly and beautifully with the few simple tools they have. Maya Angelou’s voice will echo into the darkness and her voice will bring light to us as it always has. She will still rise.

In memoriam, here are a 10 of my favorite Maya Angelou quotes:

  1. I believe that each of us comes from the creator trailing wisps of glory.
  2. You alone are enough. You have nothing to prove to anybody.
  3. I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.
  4. You may not control all the events that happen to you, but you can decide not to be reduced by them.
  5. I’ve learned that you shouldn’t go through life with a catcher’s mitt on both hands; you need to be able to throw something back.
  6. Nothing will work unless you do.
  7. You are the sum total of everything you’ve ever seen, heard, eaten, smelled, been told, forgot – it’s all there. Everything influences each of us, and because of that I try to make sure that my experiences are positive.
  8. We may encounter many defeats but we must not be defeated.
  9. Never make someone a priority when all you are to them is an option. (Love this; this quote helped to empower me as I worked through my last break up.)
  10. A woman’s heart should be so hidden in God that a man has to seek Him just to find her. (This has been mantra for a long while but only Maya Angelou could articulate it so well.)
Did i miss a good quote? Let me know in the comments below.


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