March 12th 2021

You followed your heart and thereby touched mine. Using words and courage. Your words reached to me. Full of courage that led me ahead. Your words had wings and lifted me up, leaving oppression and violence behind. Your words. Embodying your soul and pain, your spirit to fight and the determination to soar. Your wings were ready for take off and you offered your shoulders to carry us with you. To empower future generations, up and onwards.

And I. At the end of the world. Where no-one planned to live. They sailed across the ocean seeking refuge from their own sins— escaping oppression. Only to find more cold, but a land to call home. And later, to become the oppressors and thieves themselves. 

And that is how we forget, oh so quickly, where we come from and who we are. Dismissing those who seek asylum. Sending them back to the violence and terror. My heart is crying. I am they and they are I.

Yes and I, here, having it all. Secure on the surface but the violence boiling underneath. The society. The uncertainty, the constant threat of brutality. When a woman is killed by domestic abuse I know. I know she is I, I am she.

We are one. United. Chain under constant strain because we do not nurture the weakest links. We let the strongest break the bond — joints and bones, yes bones.

But then I remember, because you gave me words that have wings. I was born to rise up, again and again. Your words gave me strength to keep my eyes on the road, to not look away.

And I look the horror in the eye and I stare. And I see, us. We are we, you and I, me and you. We rise up. Higher and higher.

And your words rise. They rise and lift us up.

Thank you Maya Angelou

Takk Maya Angelou.

— — —

Still I rise

by Maya Angelou

You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may tread 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’ll 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 the hope of the slave.
I rise
I rise
I rise.

— — —

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Maya Angelou