Since I first read I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings, as senior in high school, I have regularly turned to Maya Angelou for inspiration. This week, I have read this stunning poem more than once, may finally get it. Having laid myself bare on Huffington Post, on Election Day, only to feel more naked on Wednesday (made worse by taunts and hurtful comments on Twitter), this poem gives me hope today. It is a reminder, like this photo by Sandra Crook, that there is always color to be found.
Thank you to this supportive writing community for rising each week, to the 100-word challenge that Rochelle Wisoff-Fields throws down, and the beautiful positivity you spread. If you’d like to join us, check out her blog Addicted to Purple, for more details. As always, I appreciate honest, constructive feedback.
Up From The Debris, We Rise
“But mama, everything is so gray; how can you smile?”
As they passed the burnt out buildings and stone debris, Julia held her daughter Audrey’s hand tighter.
“In winter, snow turns black with soot, but when it melts, the tulips still rise and spread their color.”
Her daughter still looked confused; she exhaled hopeless.
“Don’t believe that it’s over, my love. Hope is not gray; we can always find color. The sun is still in the sky; the flowers will return in the spring, and we must always rise.”
As they passed tumbled bricks, the child smiled.
Did you want to see me broken? Bowed Head and lowered eyes? Shoulders falling down like teardrops, weakened by my soulful cries? … I rise.
If you’d like a real treat, and I mean inspiration, watch Ms. Angelou read her poem!
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