The Complete Collected Poems of Maya Angelou by Maya Angelou

By Maya Angelou

From her earliest choice of poetry (Just provide Me a funky Drink of Water 'fore I Diiie, 1971) to her most recent (On the heartbeat of Morning, brought on the inauguration of President Clinton on January 20, 1993), Angelou's paintings by no means fails to grip the imagination.

during this anthology, she reviews on love, touring, and getting older.

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From Bookslut
"Adrienne wealthy is difficult, as a poet and as a philosopher. The poems in cellphone Ringing within the Labyrinth are choked with traps and snares and difficulties that circulate in circles. She’s so deft, in a few enigmatic approach, that she manages to drag off references and turns of word that will sink the other poet’s paintings, that might look pretentious or overwrought in different fingers. within the nine-part “Draft #2006,” that may be my favourite piece during this quantity, she rates Karl Marx’s Theses on Feuerbach partly 4, visits a farmer swallowing pesticide in Andhra Pradesh partially six, and talks concerning the “thereness” of a specific thing partially 9 -- and but someway, via anything edgier and brainier than magic, the poem is rarely heavy-handedly political or philosophical. It’s simply thought-provoking. And round. And difficult. you'll take a seat stewing over the 1st line -- “Suppose we got here again as ghosts asking the unasked questions” -- for hours, after which there are principles and photographs that supply natural excitement with their secret. The “border of poetry” is “dreamfaces blurring horrorlands. ” In “rooms of mahogany and leather,/ conversations open in overseas code. Thighs and buttocks to open later by means of/ association. ” there's something undying approximately this poem, even if it’s approximately timeliness:

They requested me, is that this time worse than another.

I stated, for whom?

Wanted to teach them anything. whereas I wrote at the
chalkboard they drifted out. I grew to become again to an empty room.

Maybe I couldn’t write quick sufficient. might be it used to be too soon.

“Draft #2006” made me take into consideration what it is going to suggest to catch this second in background with a poem. There are poets who've succeeded in grabbing a second, epically and forever -- T. S. Eliot’s “Lovesong of J. Alfred Prufrock” does it, and Ginsburg’s “Howl,” and a number of other of Auden’s poems and, possibly such a lot completely, Dan Pagis’s “Written in Pencil within the Sealed Railway vehicle. ” As I begin to give it some thought, such a lot of powerful poems do catch the instant, rigidly and obviously. “Draft #2006,” as I reread it, is this type of -- it captures a time on the earth, within the human international, that's slippery, wonderful and perhaps inevitable.

There are puzzles and their attainable suggestions all through this quantity, and the useless -- skeletons, ghosts, casualties of battle and famine, composers via their tune, well-known philosophers via their phrases, William Blake -- emerge repeatedly to invite questions. They locate solutions in mystery codes -- “ghost limbs cross into spasm within the night,” “history as wallpaper/urgently chosen clipped and pasted/but the room itself nowhere,” “the exits are slick with people/going someplace quick, ” “And underneath the outside of boredom/ indecipherable worry. ” There are strangely apt convergences, unforeseen principles and issues that make feel jointly, as in “Hubble photos: After Sappho”:

These impersonae, even though we name them
won’t invade us as on motion picture screens

they are so outdated, so new, we aren't to them
we examine them or don’t from in the milky gauze

of our tilted gazing
but they don’t glance again and we can't damage them

These are the works of a mature poet, somebody who speaks many metaphorical languages -- math, technological know-how, politics, track, grief -- and smoothes all of them into one historical, new language. it's infrequent that somebody within the twenty first Century, anyone with a complicated schooling and a thorough bent and laurels to leisure on, doesn’t lose it as a poet, turning predictable, writing approximately trivia with no exposing greater than what’s at the web page. yet by some means, Adrienne wealthy is trickily handling it, needling on the dermis, writing real, genuine poems. there are such a lot of dreadful instructions wealthy could’ve long gone, following on improper turns taken by means of such a lot of different once-great 20th century poets -- maudlin speeches, off-putting, phony sagas of gooey Californian intercourse, predictable memoirs. as an alternative, in her seventies, Adrienne wealthy has written a magnetic, fascinating masterwork. "

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33 Ill This life, a small garden, yet more spacious Than lasting: prehistory under my feet And the advance of air over all that moves Through it. "The present, which is with us Eternity" (CIaudel). "The small round floor That makes us passionate" (Alighieri). The weakness of loved things is in love, Praiseworthy, as long as the talk continues. IV And now I see you, finally, and can speak: A sudden spring of words in the desert Of my mouth. That is only an image of you In my speech, my speech in your being.

CI-GiT His time was bounded by two faultless errors, The taking of the fatal sword And the final combat, the two great brothers Resolved in their one blood. There are trees, and an open meadow in summer, Silent, hypnotized into A simulacrum of presence, with a slight Wateriness at the edges, And the requisite clash of battle, as noiseless As harmless, because the curse Is what kills and it has killed already In unknowable foretime. And yet the other, his clear double, struggled In Balin for life.

The tall grain of those hours! 44 Still Life There are apples in the cupboard and a bowl of almonds, Glass dishes (one with a chipped edge), cups, wine bottles, Plates, linen folded in squares. The apples and almonds sleep in their closed, full shapes. The dishes and linens have forgotten being set out or unfolded. The apples have filled the cupboard with apple-smell, Dusky and sweet when I open the door. I am not keeping track of the days you have been gone. They are all one day. 45 Quiet night.

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