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A warrior. A poet. An encourager. A light. A woman. Phenomenally. Phenomenal woman, was she.

I don’t think I’m alone in saying I am grateful for the words and work of Dr. Maya Angelou. Few words have touched me the way hers have and I’ve shared them here often. Searching for the “best” quote to post to honor her memory proved an enriching, but impossible task (how DOES one pick a favorite? Truthbombs galore). These are just a few of my favs.

But one particular poem has always held a special place in my heart. Even now it’s hard to deny how powerful it feels to read it aloud. If you’ve read it before, you know what I mean. If not, try it now.

A life phenomenally lived and such beautiful, inspiring lessons left for us all. Rest in peace.

*** Phenomenal Woman ***
(by Maya Angelou)

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.

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