Remembering Maya Angelou

Photo by Adria Richards.

Photo by Adria Richards.

For anyone who hasn’t heard the news yet, Maya Angelou died yesterday.

No, I’m not sad today. It’s a little odd to grieve over someone you don’t know, but hearing about her death did make me think of my first encounter with her writing. It’s funny how reading someone’s books can make it feel like you know them in certain ways.

I was pretty young when I first read I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings. Some of the things she talks about in that book flew over my head the first time I read it, but each time I returned to it I understood a little more.

The rest of her autobiographies didn’t capture my attention the way the first one did. I suspect that I was too young to grasp everything she had to say.

She was an incredible writer, though. Many stories can be read silently, but hers work better if they’re read aloud. You have to feel every syllable to understand what she’s saying and why she chose certain words.

I’m looking forward to returning to her books as an adult reader. There is a tentative plan bubbling in the back of my mind to blog my way through them, but I’ll have to see what I pick up this time around.

Is anyone interested in following along? Where should I begin?


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