National Poetry Month: Maya Angelou

In honor of national poetry month, we cannot help but to recognize one of the most influential and accomplished writers of the 20tth century, the late Maya Angelou.

Born on April 4, 1928, in St. Louis, Missouri, Angelou faced several hardships at a young age from the divorce of her parents, to being sexually assaulted at age seven and to having a child at sixteen. She channeled events in her life such as these and put it into her art, making it relatable to those who read it.

Her most famous works should ring a bell, including Still I Rise, Phenomenal Woman and On the Pulse of Morning, which she recited at the inaugural ceremony for President Bill Clinton. Below is an excerpt from Still I Rise.

“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.”

Over the course of her career she has received dozens of awards for her literary works including a Pulitzer prize, a Tony award and three Grammys.

Aside from her work in poetry, Angelou was an actress, dancer and civil rights activist.

After her passing in 2014, Maya Angelou is still recognized for her poetry, and her social and literary impacts will never be forgotten.