Maya Angelou Phenomenal Woman
Maya Angelou is a poet born and raised in America. She has compiled several poems including the Phenomenal Woman which is one of her most acknowledged works (1978). This poem has been praised and criticised in equal measures. However, one thing that the supporters and critics seem to agree on is that Maya Angelou is a phenomenal woman as the poem says. This article also seeks to share some views on this topic.
Before agreeing or disagreeing with the assertion that Angelou is a phenomenal woman, one has to analyse both her life and this poem at the same time. As noted by Kelly Holland (1997), Angelou did not have a very fortunate upbringing. She did not have an opportunity to live with her parents as they had divorced when she was still very young. She lived in an environment characterised by a host of challenges, needless to mention that she was raped at one time. She was a black woman who grew up in America at a time when racism was still the order of the day. It is amazing to see someone with such a background growing up to become a poet and inspire people all over the world. Somehow, that is phenomenal.
Coming to her poem, this is a fascinating way of inspiring women to believe in themselves. As Hagen Lyman says, happiness is one thing that every woman looks for but most of them look for it at a wrong place (1997). Hagen also notes that appreciation is another thing that every woman would ask for but most of them look for it in a wrong way. If there is a woman out there who is wondering how to be happy and fulfilled, she should read this poem and implement it to the letter. It is a manual for unconditional happiness.
In this poem, Maya seems to be enjoying every bit of happiness and appreciation, and models are wondering how she manages all this despite her unattractive figure. People can’t understand why men adore her. But she tells them the secret is simple; self –confidence. She tells them it’s all about how you carry yourself around. How you look at yourself and how you don’t allow people to define you. It is about your personality. People will not define you by how you look but by how you let them define you. In short, according to her poem, we define ourselves.
In conclusion, through this poem, Maya urges women to be in charge of their lives so that everything else falls in place. The poem is an entertaining and educative peace worth reading. Indeed, Maya is a phenomenal woman.