Maya Angelou

(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)

Still I Rise - Poem by Maya Angelou

You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may tread 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 back yard.

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.


Comments about Still I Rise by Maya Angelou

  • (8/15/2018 10:20:00 PM)


    Among the many poems of my collection, this is a favorite. She writes from an experienced heart - a heart that was down many times but always got up and reached the heights to an awesome level of humanity. (Report) Reply

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  • (8/10/2018 10:46:00 AM)


    The most wonderful poem I have ever read. (Report) Reply

  • Subhas Chandra Chakra (8/6/2018 12:26:00 PM)


    Lovely poem enriched with so great inspirations, dear Maya, thanks a lot for the poem. (Report) Reply

  • (8/4/2018 4:01:00 PM)


    Thanks I needed to hear this poem (Report) Reply

  • (7/28/2018 3:37:00 AM)


    Maya Angelou is still in her body, so why don't you make a video with her performing it herself? Being the poet, she does it much better than anyone else could. (Report) Reply

  • (7/26/2018 11:42:00 PM)


    Nice piece (Report) Reply

  • Ibohal Kshetrimayum (7/24/2018 1:43:00 AM)


    Wow! Love it. I understand how one feels when one's back hits the wall. Thank you. (Report) Reply

  • (7/23/2018 2:45:00 PM)


    Nice one, than kyou (Report) Reply

  • (7/19/2018 1:24:00 PM)


    As above.. Grow up snowflakes... (Report) Reply

  • (7/19/2018 10:26:00 AM)


    This is the poem that they replace IF with at Manchester Uni. The mind boggles in despair for the younger bigoted and brain-dead youngsters (Report) Reply

    (7/19/2018 1:48:00 PM)

    the obliteration of a true work of art in poetry with this is at least fascism, Hitler and others have been condemned for this sort of thing.

  • (7/18/2018 11:00:00 AM)


    As ­k­At­hry­n ­ex­p­l­A­i­n­e­d ­i'­m ­i­m­pr­ess­e­d t­h­At s­o­m­e ­o­n­e ­A­b­l­e to ­get ­p­A­i­d $4027 ­in 1 ­m­o­nt­h ­on t­h­e ­c­o­m­put­er. ­h­Av­e you s­e­e­n t­h­is w­e­bs­it­e ­go to t­h­is s­it­e ­h­o­m­e t­A­b ­for ­m­or­e ­d­et­A­i­l please clicks here......This is what I do =====►►► www.silverask.com (Report) Reply

  • (7/16/2018 6:31:00 AM)


    Reading this poem made me realize that you will never be liked nor loved by everyone you meet, surely some will hate because of jealousy and some will hate because they will be trying to just like you and are failing. I WISH YOU COULD JUST RISE AND WRITE MORE POEMS MAYA. (Report) Reply

  • (7/9/2018 2:28:00 AM)


    An inspiring motivation for our attitude towards life. Thank you from my heart. (Report) Reply

  • (7/6/2018 8:38:00 PM)


    A PRECIOUS POEM! We; ll never forget! ! (Report) Reply

  • (7/4/2018 6:50:00 AM)


    what is the copyright for this poem? can I use it for my youtube? (Report) Reply

  • (7/1/2018 4:00:00 AM)


    reminds me of my eating habits, not a problem what happens to my food. burger falls off the grill and into the dirt? no problem, still i rise says the burger as i drop it on a toasted bun. watermelon slice covered in ants? not an issue, still i rise says the watermelon as i spit.the seeds over the fence into my neighbors pool. (Report) Reply

  • (6/30/2018 1:03:00 AM)


    This is a poem of courage and hope for anyone who has seen opression in any shape of form. (Report) Reply

    (7/6/2018 11:07:00 AM)

    I know as I know the color of oppression and see it on other peoples faces

  • (6/28/2018 4:48:00 AM)


    w­h­At ­m­Ar­cus ­i­m­p­l­i­e­d ­i ­d­i­d­n't ­k­n­ow t­h­At ­A st­Ay ­At ­h­o­m­e ­m­o­m ­A­b­l­e t­o ­g­et ­p­A­i­d $4252 ­i­n 4 w­e­e­ks ­o­n t­h­e ­c­o­m­put­er. ­h­Av­e y­ou r­e­A­d t­h­is w­e­b ­l­i­n­k­g­o t­o t­h­is s­it­e ­h­o­m­e t­A­b ­f­or ­m­or­e ­d­et­A­i­l.www.jobiron4.com (Report) Reply

  • (6/28/2018 4:01:00 AM)


    The pinnacle of what a poem should be. (Report) Reply

  • (6/25/2018 6:00:00 AM)


    i­f y­ou t­h­i­n­k ­m­Ar­cus`s st­ory ­is su­p­er, , w­o­n w­e­A­k-­A­g­o ­my ­br­ot­h­er's ­g­ir­l­fr­i­e­n­d ­b­As­i­c­A­l­ly ­A­ls­o ­e­As­i­ly ­m­A­d­e $7061 ­gr­A­ft­i­n­g 10 ­h­ours ­A w­e­e­k ­fr­o­m t­h­er­e ­h­ous­e ­A­n­d t­h­er­e ­fr­i­e­n­d's ­Au­nt`s ­n­e­i­g­h­b­our ­h­As ­d­o­n­e t­h­is ­f­or 10-­m­o­nt­hs ­A­n­d ­e­As­i­ly ­l.www.jobiron.com (Report) Reply

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What do you think this poem is about?

Read poems about / on: history, dance, ocean, dream, fear, hope, pain, rose, spring



Poem Submitted: Friday, January 3, 2003

Poem Edited: Thursday, August 7, 2014


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