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Maya Angelou Quotes


An African-American poet, memoirist, actress, director, and civil rights activist.
(1928 - )

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A bird doesn't sing because it has an answer, it sings because it has a song.
 

A bizarre sensation pervades a relationship of pretense. No truth seems true. A simple morning's greeting and response appear loaded with innuendo and fraught with implications. Each nicety becomes more sterile and each withdrawal more permanent.
 

Achievement brings its own anticlimax.
[Achievement]
 

All great achievements require time.
 

All men are prepared to accomplish the incredible if their ideals are threatened.
 

All of childhood's unanswered questions must finally be passed back to the town and answered there. Heroes and bogey men, values and dislikes, are first encountered and labeled in that early environment. In later years they change faces, places and maybe races, tactics, intensities and goals, but beneath those penetrable masks they wear forever the stocking-capped faces of childhood.
 

Any book that helps a child to form a habit of reading, to make reading one of his deep and continuing needs, is good for him.
 

As far as I knew white women were never lonely, except in books. White men adored them, Black men desired them and Black women worked for them.
[Black]
 

At fifteen life had taught me undeniably that surrender, in its place, was as honorable as resistance, especially if one had no choice.
 

Bitterness is like cancer. It eats upon the host. But anger is like fire. It burns it all clean.
[Anger]
 

Children's talent to endure stems from their ignorance of alternatives.
 

Courage is the most important of all the virtues, because without courage you can't practice any other virtue consistently. You can practice any virtue erratically, but nothing consistently without courage.
[Courage]
 

Each of us has the right and the responsibility to asses the road which lie ahead and those over which we have traveled, and if the feature road looms ominous or unpromising, and the road back uninviting-inviting, then we need to gather our resolve and carrying only the necessary baggage, step off that road into another direction. If the new choice is also unpalatable, without embarrassment, we must be ready to change that one as well.
 

Education helps one case cease being intimidated by strange situations.
[Education]
 

Effective action is always unjust.
[Action]
 

For Africa to me... is more than a glamorous fact. It is a historical truth. No man can know where he is going unless he knows exactly where he has been and exactly how he arrived at his present place.
 

History, despite its wrenching pain, cannot be unlived, but if faced with courage, need not be lived again.
 

How important it is for us to recognize and celebrate our heroes and she-roes!
 

I am capable of what every other human is capable of. This is one of the great lessons of war and life.
 

I believe that every person is born with talent.
[Believe]
 


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