Elder Woman... A Poem for Miss. Maya

Elder Woman… A Poem for Miss. Maya

Elder Woman... A Poem for Miss. Maya


Miss. Maya, Can I tell our shared story?

How we all became your daughters and sons?

Many of us never met you face to face.

Yet…Somehow feel as if we are all kin to you.


You wiped tears of shame from eyes distances away with pages used as tissues.

Ink running over and down like water cascading off cheeks onto your volumes’ sheets

We were first introduced to you and your writings in “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings”

And from that day on, we were hooked.

Wishing we could crawl into your bosom and just weep.


Elder Woman, you were clothed with wisdom and grace.

Your words gave us strength.

In them, we found our identities and in them a uniqueness of beauty.

Your many gifts brought you in the presence of kings and queens.


I have admired you for as long as I can remember.

Your poems were read to me like they were fairy tales.

Miss. Maya, could you feel from heaven how deeply my heart ached when I heard of your passing?

Yet, my Spirit leaped for joy knowing in whose bosom you now lay your head.


You left a legacy of words, of things.

So tangible we can feel them as they leap off the pages or hear the recordings of your voice rhythmically lulling us.


You made us all feel like your special babies.

Your life’s journey is one of deliverance and forgiveness.

We are all your daughters and sons.


We thank you for planting the seed…Elder Woman.


Dr. Maya Angelou
Photographed By Brigitte Lacombe At Dr. Angelou’s Home In Winston-Salem, North Carolina


Written by: Lela Jefferson Fagan –  6/4/14

© 2014, Lela Jefferson Fagan. All rights reserved.

Lela Jefferson Fagan is the author of the book “Poetry of a Black Girl: The Darkness and the Light” and lead blogger at “Memoirs of a Black Girl”. Lela is an avid reader “A Real Bookworm” of all things in print. She finds joy in sharing socially and blogging about topics that matter the most to her. Born and raised in Brooklyn, NY. Lela now lives in Houston, TX with her husband Oji, an educator and Football Coach. @LelaJFagan - See more at: http://www.memoirsofablackgirl.com/

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