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Million Man March Poem - Poem by Maya Angelou

The night has been long,
The wound has been deep,
The pit has been dark,
And the walls have been steep.

Under a dead blue sky on a distant beach,
I was dragged by my braids just beyond your reach.
Your hands were tied, your mouth was bound,
You couldn't even call out my name.
You were helpless and so was I,
But unfortunately throughout history
You've worn a badge of shame.

I say, the night has been long,
The wound has been deep,
The pit has been dark
And the walls have been steep.

But today, voices of old spirit sound
Speak to us in words profound,
Across the years, across the centuries,
Across the oceans, and across the seas.
They say, draw near to one another,
Save your race.
You have been paid for in a distant place,
The old ones remind us that slavery's chains
Have paid for our freedom again and again.

The night has been long,
The pit has been deep,
The night has been dark,
And the walls have been steep.

The hells we have lived through and live through still,
Have sharpened our senses and toughened our will.
The night has been long.
This morning I look through your anguish
Right down to your soul.
I know that with each other we can make ourselves whole.
I look through the posture and past your disguise,
And see your love for family in your big brown eyes.

I say, clap hands and let's come together in this meeting ground,
I say, clap hands and let's deal with each other with love,
I say, clap hands and let us get from the low road of indifference,
Clap hands, let us come together and reveal our hearts,
Let us come together and revise our spirits,
Let us come together and cleanse our souls,
Clap hands, let's leave the preening
And stop impostering our own history.
Clap hands, call the spirits back from the ledge,
Clap hands, let us invite joy into our conversation,
Courtesy into our bedrooms,
Gentleness into our kitchen,
Care into our nursery.

The ancestors remind us, despite the history of pain
We are a going-on people who will rise again.

And still we rise.


Comments about Million Man March Poem by Maya Angelou

  • Silver Star - 3,089 Points Shah Surja (11/26/2015 1:56:00 PM)

    The ancestors remind us, despite the
    history of pain
    We are a going-on people who will
    rise again.
    And still we rise. (Report) Reply

    11 person liked.
    2 person did not like.
  • Gold Star - 5,011 Points Curtis Johnson (11/9/2015 3:13:00 AM)

    May Maya's words continue to speak of legacy's child who must pass on, but whose messages never die. (Report) Reply

  • Gold Star - 93,241 Points Susan Williams (10/16/2015 7:01:00 PM)

    she is a well-loved and respected voice in literature, a strong voice, a compassionate voice, a thoughtful voice... we have all been blessed by her life and poetry (Report) Reply

Read all 22 comments »

Poems About Poem

  1. 1. Million Man March Poem , Maya Angelou
  2. 2. An Almost Made Up Poem , Charles Bukowski
  3. 3. A Silly Poem , Spike Milligan
  4. 4. The Saddest Poem , Pablo Neruda
  5. 5. Saddest Poem , Pablo Neruda
  6. 6. A Birthday Poem , Ted Kooser
  7. 7. I Am Offering This Poem , Jimmy Santiago Baca
  8. 8. Poem , Simon Armitage
  9. 9. A Funeral Poem On The Death Of C. E. An .. , Phillis Wheatley
  10. 10. A Poem For Myself , Etheridge Knight
  11. 11. Kinetic Poem No.2 , Roger McGough
  12. 12. Poem In Praise Of Menstruation , Lucille Clifton
  13. 13. Poem For A Poem , Naseer Ahmed Nasir
  14. 14. Night Poem , Margaret Atwood
  15. 15. Love Poem , Richard Brautigan
  16. 16. Poem In October , Dylan Thomas
  17. 17. Rhyming Poem , Charles Bukowski
  18. 18. Poem On His Birthday , Dylan Thomas
  19. 19. God, A Poem , James Fenton
  20. 20. To Make A Dadist Poem , Tristan Tzara
  21. 21. Poem (As The Cat) , William Carlos Williams
  22. 22. The Poem You Asked For , Larry Levis
  23. 23. Poem For My 43rd Birthday , Charles Bukowski
  24. 24. Poem , Elizabeth Bishop
  25. 25. In A Poem , Robert Frost
  26. 26. Poem 1 , Edmund Spenser
  27. 27. A Dramatic Poem , William Butler Yeats
  28. 28. Other Lives And Dimensions And Finally A.. , Bob Hicok
  29. 29. Notice What This Poem Is Not Doing , William Stafford
  30. 30. Poem For Maya , Carolyn Forché
  31. 31. A Quiet Poem , Frank O'Hara
  32. 32. Love Poem , Kathleen Jessie Raine
  33. 33. Love Poem , Louise Gluck
  34. 34. Poem Of Night , Galway Kinnell
  35. 35. - ≪Short Poem≫ A Simple Secret &.. , Ronberge (anno primo)
  36. 36. Michael: A Pastoral Poem , William Wordsworth
  37. 37. A Descriptive Poem On The Silvery Tay , William Topaz McGonagall
  38. 38. Willow Poem , William Carlos Williams
  39. 39. Heroic Poem In Praise Of Wine , Hilaire Belloc
  40. 40. The Lost Baby Poem , Lucille Clifton
  41. 41. Poem (Lana Turner Has Collapsed!) , Frank O'Hara
  42. 42. Poem Written At Morning , Wallace Stevens
  43. 43. The Poem Of Antar , Antarah (Antar) Ibn Shaddad
  44. 44. A Poem For The End Of The Century , Czeslaw Milosz
  45. 45. Poem (Hate Is Only One Of Many Responses) , Frank O'Hara
  46. 46. Poem , Donald Justice
  47. 47. Poem 24 , Edmund Spenser
  48. 48. Your Poem , Robert William Service
  49. 49. Beauty: [notes For An Unfinished Poem] , Wilfred Owen
  50. 50. The Next Poem , Dana Gioia
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