Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Words Mean More

Maya Angelou's life
was her own

but she gave
to us pieces

and standing by
to continue to describe

through ink on paper
or waves in the air.

So what does it matter
that she spoke and wrote

and taught college
and marched
and researched and sang

and reported and acted
and inaugurated

in her one life?

What does it matter

one more Renaissance woman
growing up black and poor
in the South

and becoming a figurehead
of what one person

can do and overcome
and walk through?

What does it matter
that you didn't always
think of her

but she was just there
doing what a literary
fixture does

being present

and that now any tribute
to her

comes out feeling
like a cliche
not nearly as well written

as the one life was lived?

This poem © 2014 Emily Cooper.