Maya Angelou

(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)

Maya Angelou
Do you like this poet?
28521 person liked.
38800 person did not like.

(born Marguerite Ann Johnson on April 4, 1928) was an American author and poet who has been called "America's most visible black female autobiographer" by scholar Joanne M. Braxton. She is best known for her series of six autobiographical volumes, which focus on her childhood and early adult experiences. The first and most highly acclaimed, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (1969), tells of her first seventeen years. It brought her international recognition, and was nominated for a National Book Award. She has been awarded over 30 honorary degrees and was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize for her 1971 volume of poetry, Just Give Me a Cool Drink of Water 'Fore I Diiie.

Angelou... more »

Click here to add this poet to your My Favorite Poets.


more quotations »
  • ''There is a kind of strength that is almost frightening in black women. It's as if a steel rod runs right through the head down to the feet.''
    Maya Angelou (b. 1928), U.S. author. interview broadcast, Nov. 21, 1973. "A Conversation with Maya Angelou," Conversations with Maya Angelou (1989).
  • The white American man makes the white American woman maybe not superfluous but just a little kind of decoration. Not really important to turning around the wheels of the state. Well the black America...
    Maya Angelou (b. 1928), U.S. author, poet. interview, Nov. 21, 1973. "A Conversation with Maya Angelou," Conversations with Maya Angelou (1989).
  • Strictly speaking, one cannot legislate love, but what one can do is legislate fairness and justice. If legislation does not prohibit our living side by side, sooner or later your child will fall on t...
    Maya Angelou (b. 1928), African American author and performer. As quoted in I Dream a World, by Brian Lanker (1989).
  • ...there is a difference between being convinced and being stubborn. I'm not certain what the difference is, but I do know that if you butt your head against a stone wall long enough, at some point yo...
    Maya Angelou (b. 1928), U.S. author and performer. As quoted in Reel Women, part 4, by Ally Acker (1991). Said in 1979, on giving up her attempt t...
  • ''...talent is like electricity. We don't understand electricity. We use it.''
    Maya Angelou (b. 1928), U.S. author and performer. Black Women Writers at Work, ch. 1, by Claudia Tate (1983).
Read more quotations »

Comments about Maya Angelou

more comments »
  • Harambe (3/19/2018 7:13:00 AM)

    My country lass, come to heaven my good lady, I love my people and the world, the poems you preach speak to my sole of my shoe.69 lol haha xd my dudies

  • parkash (3/15/2018 11:23:00 PM)


  • abiral bhardwaj (3/14/2018 7:22:00 PM)

    touching and inspiring poems. Whenever I am sad I find these poems removing sadness and energizing.

  • Ronald (3/14/2018 1:57:00 PM)

    Wow Maya Angelou an amazing writer and yall being rude come on this is like one of the best poets

  • jordanhalaifonua (3/11/2018 7:28:00 PM)

    so sweet for the p


  • Kenedi Langford (3/7/2018 8:27:00 AM)

    I do not see why you guys are being rude about this women who fought for your freedom and you are making rude
    things about her poems. I guess your parents did not show you manners huh. Well I did not like some of you comments and these people are: MAdson, Zukini zkabrusco, and Ronald mcdonald.

  • MAdson (3/2/2018 5:58:00 PM)

    These are tooo long for a poem

  • Baybdoll (3/1/2018 6:35:00 PM)

    Amazing job i am like so

  • Zukini zkabrusco (2/28/2018 10:57:00 AM)

    This women just kdedoekddjiedij at writing poems

  • ronald mcdonald (2/27/2018 10:00:00 AM)

    (͡◉ ͜ʖ ͡◉) (͡◉ ͜ʖ ͡◉) (͡◉ ͜ʖ ͡◉) ᕕ(ཀ ʖ̯ ཀ) ᕗ ᕕ(ཀ ʖ̯ ཀ) ᕗ ━╤デ╦︻(▀̿̿Ĺ̯̿̿▀̿ ̿)

Read all 275 comments »
Best Poem of Maya Angelou

Phenomenal Woman

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.
I'm not cute or built to suit a fashion model's size
But when I start to tell them,
They think I'm telling lies.
I say,
It's in the reach of my arms
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
I'm a woman
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

I walk into a room
Just as cool as you please,
And to a man,
The fellows stand or
Fall down on their knees.
Then they swarm around me,
A hive of honey bees.
I say,
It's the fire in my eyes,
And the flash of my ...

Read the full of Phenomenal Woman
[Report Error]