Phenomenal Woman by Maya Angelou (Black History 365/Women’s History Month)

  • Phenomenal Woman by Maya Angelou (In honor of International Women’s Day)

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,   
The curl of my lips.   
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
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
Phenomenally.

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 my back,   
The sun of my smile,
The ride of my breasts,
The grace of my style.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
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
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

Image result for maya angelou art

All natural

Here we go again, so H & M is back in the news with an ad that stirred criticism. However, this time around H & M stood their ground for their stance to allow their models to appear in whatever way they felt comfortable. To be honest I can’t quite fault them. In regards to that, H & M did have the sole responsibility in inciting an outrage last year with an an ad that depicted a young black boy with a hood sweatshirt that read “coolest monkey in the jungle”. Black twitter and social media went to voice their disdain over the image and photo shopped a positive slogan on the kids sweater that had the word King to describe him. Anyways getting back to the topic at hand, I don’t see anything wrong with the girls hairstyle, actually I admire it because this can show young minds to see that changing their natural hair to conform to the unnatural (straightening their hair) just to please others or make them feel comfortable around them isn’t empowering . With that said, the outrage over how H & M could dare to have this type of representation for their brand is bullshit in my opinion. So you’re criticizing this young girl for wearing her hair naturally when all she possibly sees is women in her family or around her with relaxers, weaves, etc… What the fuck?! Come on now, and to makes matters worse the black community on social media and so forth are the ones making the most noise about this. In conclusion, I think with all the backlash that is involved in this story, this might diminish her confidence and self esteem to the point where she won’t want to continue to wear or desire to wear her hair naturally and might conform to wearing it straight in the future. And that is quite disheartening. If you would like to read the article I got my source information from, it’s on the bullet point below. Anyways thanks for reading, peace and keep it real.

Image result for black women art natural hair
side by side shot of little girl for hm ad

Begin again

Cotton ball clouds tear apart from one another

Until the sky is naked blue

Everything needs distance,

But don’t fret

They will soon make their return

In the meantime

Hold onto god’s unchanging hand,

A ravishing scenery to complex to describe in words,

The setting sun

Finally loses its early day scorching intensity,

Now I await for another vibrant day like this one

that has passed to begin again

Anyways, stay cool my friends

sunshine

She makes me wonder

  • Many thanks to my frequent collaborator and friend Aston Kamunde for giving me his first draft to this poem, and allowing me to strengthen it.

Gentle touch as echoes pass
Remnants of the night
fell softly like feathery petals
many of them
reminding me of her
perfectly crafted in black and gold

Soft winds drew me
in and out
quenching my thirst
A thousand kisses
splattered like sunny secrets from the gods
deep with love songs. 

Unaware of the impending dawn
fantasy and lust chain me
and no word feels alive
none could describe this feeling

I wonder;
does she remember me?
will she call me?
will she ever come back again my way?

Photo credit – Nicolas Postiglioni

The African Green Gold

Mother nature takes no breather
Challenges are enforced daily Rain drops shimmer
Tasting and swallowing
old earth for new
if only it was true

The rain falls hard
On bare ground,
Intoxicating the air
with new smells

But will Mother Nature continue to allow
the birds to sing with a feathery flame?
Or for frogs to dance in their pool?
I tell you the beauty of rain is gone but will soon return

The land is consumed with grief
for the loss of the African green gold,
Even the morning sun
lays on its death bed

Encounter with an African Goddess

(This is dedicated to all the African beauties)

The sky ebbed and flowed

Curious winds centered my focus

Feeble petals flying perplexedly  

From the dark petals that painted the earth

As if ready for the arrival of a new but old force

Announced by the distilled sweetness of a bright day

Colored by a million golden strands of sunshine

That offered a thousand promises of a woman’s spell  

Falling on her dark skin like a ripple of starlight during half moon

She was an African goddess

Her uniqueness was well hidden just as her luscious curves

Each footstep escorted by a different tune from the former

From gorgeous hips worshiped by long legs and full thighs

Slightly covered by sunny feathers speaking my entire language      

Soft breeze slithering seductively through her long tangled hair

That seemed to spew secrets of an infinite beauty

Her eyes were decorated with a wondrous darkness

That fought so bravely to dim my sparkle

Encounter with the image before me

Seemed like all revelation fulfilled

Her beauty blessed my morning cup

filling it with clouds of dreams and worldly perspectives

Our complexion protected against the sun

That’ll never stop testing our resilience

Appreciating her exuberant confidence

That begins simply with a ravishing smile

Address to truly yours

I must say that this is one of those fortunate encounters

I call her a treasure trove that’s inside my grasp

Doing my best to stay course

to her rising paradise that’s not easy to hold onto if unprepared

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