My Day of Contemplation

Today, we watch the movie, Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom. I was thinking a lot about him. The condition of the world and the people who are suffering. Africa is suffering and the Middle East countries are suffering. Now the Ukraine is facing violence, fear, and possible war. Jews are being made to “register”  with the government. How awful for Jews who know this has happened before and where this road goes.


The road has led to concentration camps, experimental surgeries, starvation, loss of everything in their lives. Jews are not the only ones. We must remember the Poles, the Serbs and Croatians, and gypsies who had their lives ripped from them. Gypsies were considered below the Jews, they were the dung of the world. After all the wars, bigotry and hatred, we are once again asking a type of people to register. WHY? Why are human beings so determined to kill, abuse and torture those who are different? Resentment and bitterness and the desire for revenge needs to be examined and rejected.


I was then lost in thought among Maya Angelou’s poetry. There are so many that I love. So I decided to share a couple of them with you. Maya did not live in a perfect world and yet she managed to give us all the gift of words and the power of survival and the joy of loving others more than ourselves.

Phenomenal Woman

pretty women wonder where my secret lies.

I’m not cute or built to suit a fashion model’s size.

But when I start to tell them, They think I’m telling lies.

I say,

It’s in the reach of my arms,

The span of my hips,

The stride of my step,

I’m a woman


Phenomenal woman,

That’s me.



I walk into a room

Just as cool as you please,

And to a man,

The fellows stand or

Fall down on their knees.

Then they swarm around me,

A hive of honey bees.

I say,

It’s the fire in my eyes,

And the flash of my teeth,

The swing in my waist,

And the joy in my feet.

I’m a woman


Phenomenal woman,

That’s me.



Men themselves have wondered

What they see in me.

They try so much

But they can’t touch

My inner mystery.

When I try to show them

They say they still can’t see.

I say,

It’s in the arch of the back,

The sun of my smile,

The ride of my breasts,

The grace of my style.

I’m a women


Phenomenal woman,

That’s me.



Now you understand

Just why my head’s not bowed.

I don’t shout or jump about

Or have to talk real loud.

When you see me passing

It ought to make you proud.

I say,

It’s in the click of my heels,

The bend of my hair,

the palm of my hand,

The need for my care.

‘Cause I’m a woman


Phenomenal woman,

That’s me.”    —Maya Angelou



Still I Rise


You may write me down in history

With your bitter, twisted lies,

You may trod 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 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 hope of the slave.

I rise

I rise

I rise.    —Maya Angelou


Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou

So here are my last thoughts for this day. Love, passion, justice, bravery, rising, bearing up, pride, joy, happiness, swelling. May all of us be blessed by these words. Namaste.