June 13, 2014

mourning maya angelou

"Maya rocked me to sleep and I napped.  Don't remember the last time I took a nap....on a Thursday."

I am in mourning.  Maya Angelou passed on May 28, 2014...and I am now digesting her life through her books.  This is how I grieve.  Overwhelming desire takes hold of me to expose myself to the presence by any means available in search of greatness...and knowing.  I have always loved Maya Angelou and her words.  Her most famous poems, Still I Rise and Phenomenal Woman, I have read and recited and referenced over the years....grabbing hold to their meaning at moments when I felt less than prodigious.  

Yet as I make my way through the second book, "The Heart of A Woman", I realize that I had a faulty image of this woman.  She was not JUST the proper speaking wisdom-personified intellectual with a powerful way with words, whose image has been stamped in my mind since my pre-teen years. All that she was...was hard earned. Complex...and fierce. Frightened and Sensitive.  Courageous and sexual. Yes...sensual.  A WOMAN.  And I never saw her as such.

As I read, I am grateful for the words left behind and the clarity they bring.  The adventures....

"Ssshh.  I'm having my baked chicken & broccoli in Harlem this evening...with the writer's guild.  We're reading our very first stageplay OUT LOUD." 

I'd never been to Harlem...until Maya took me there last night.  And after I've gone around the world with her...and experienced her loves and beatings and stage fright and marches....maybe then, I can shout HALLELUJAH, SHE HAS CROSSED OVER!  There is trouble no more.  And the mourning will be done.  Until then, I read....hearing her voice from the other side.

bite of the day ~  I don't know why one's value seems to be acknowledged more when one is no longer...yet this is the way of things here.  Thank God mentor-ship need not end with the grave. Selah.