Maya Angelou

(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)

Men - Poem by Maya Angelou

When I was young, I used to
Watch behind the curtains
As men walked up and down the street. Wino men, old men.
Young men sharp as mustard.
See them. Men are always
Going somewhere.
They knew I was there. Fifteen
Years old and starving for them.
Under my window, they would pauses,
Their shoulders high like the
Breasts of a young girl,
Jacket tails slapping over
Those behinds,

One day they hold you in the
Palms of their hands, gentle, as if you
Were the last raw egg in the world. Then
They tighten up. Just a little. The
First squeeze is nice. A quick hug.
Soft into your defenselessness. A little
More. The hurt begins. Wrench out a
Smile that slides around the fear. When the
Air disappears,
Your mind pops, exploding fiercely, briefly,
Like the head of a kitchen match. Shattered.
It is your juice
That runs down their legs. Staining their shoes.
When the earth rights itself again,
And taste tries to return to the tongue,
Your body has slammed shut. Forever.
No keys exist.

Then the window draws full upon
Your mind. There, just beyond
The sway of curtains, men walk.
Knowing something.
Going someplace.
But this time, I will simply
Stand and watch.


Comments about Men by Maya Angelou

  • (1/23/2018 10:06:00 AM)

    did any one realize this poem is about unmarried sex (Report) Reply

    1 person liked.
    1 person did not like.
  • (1/16/2018 9:49:00 AM)

    youre just mad becase you coudent get someone in life anyecky (Report) Reply

  • (1/5/2018 9:46:00 AM)

    maya angelou was a freakin' pervert (Report) Reply

  • (12/21/2017 1:46:00 PM)

    I agree men are trash (Report) Reply

    (1/16/2018 9:51:00 AM)

    youre just mad becase you coudent get someonein lifr and youre trash tooo

  • Aya Sungaaskert (11/19/2017 8:32:00 AM)

    Scenarios played in my mind. Thought provoking (Report) Reply

  • Rogelio Guillermo (10/21/2017 8:57:00 AM)

    Their shoulders high like the
    Breasts of a young girl,
    Jacket tails slapping over
    Those behinds,
    (Report) Reply

  • Ojok Isaac (9/4/2017 8:04:00 AM)

    wow! that 's amazing.....may you bless so i wear your shoe (Report) Reply

  • Hassan Hayati (7/26/2017 12:25:00 AM)

    may be the curtain is used as the valuable cover that women use to hide their innocent feelings (Report) Reply

  • Suresh Raavi (6/24/2017 9:42:00 AM)

    As a man what can i say... so true in many cases. (Report) Reply

  • Rose Kanana (12/21/2016 3:33:00 AM)

    I like the use of euphemism in this poem. A very deep theme created that is thoughts evoking. Maya does it so well and she remains the best of best. (Report) Reply

  • (1/17/2016 7:54:00 AM)

    Raw and fashinating, as life it is. Wonderful expression of truth (Report) Reply

  • (11/9/2015 3:03:00 AM)

    The search for 'men' is a complicated one. Indeed the men we treasure are like all others natural treasures. They are not easily found. Sometimes we suffer hardship and deprivation to obtain them. Maya's poem teaches us the wisdom of the search, and that sometimes standing and watching must be the standard. Maybe. (Report) Reply

  • Susan Williams (10/16/2015 7:06:00 PM)

    the power of an intelligent woman telling a story that cannot be forgotten, that will haunt the intelligent reader for the rest of his life (Report) Reply

  • (9/25/2015 8:06:00 AM)

    ........nicely penned...and a tough theme ★ (Report) Reply

  • (7/23/2015 1:43:00 AM)

    Add a comment Such a nyc poem from a poetess from a different planet (^.^)....luv u Mammy Maya (Report) Reply

  • Naida Nepascua Supnet (5/18/2015 5:46:00 AM)

    As always she is a master story-teller
    She shuts her mouth never
    Revealing reality
    Without pity without mercy

    That makes her Maya Angelou
    (Report) Reply

  • G. Akanji Olaniyi (10/13/2014 8:19:00 AM)

    very revealing and moving, too. (Report) Reply

  • Vivian Muciri (10/9/2014 3:01:00 AM)

    Loved it....The emotions were well captured (Report) Reply

  • Primrose Tee (7/2/2014 1:04:00 PM)

    Ummmmm l like this one too.. (Report) Reply

  • (6/8/2014 2:41:00 PM)

    dont like this at all, too explicit (Report) Reply

Read all 64 comments »

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Read poems about / on: girl, smile, fear, world, running

Poem Submitted: Friday, January 3, 2003

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