The voice that has crossed many waters departed from this life, leaving a priceless legacy. Dr. Maya Angelou challenged all of us to become more introspective, to ask of ourselves the hard questions that we would not dare ask. She dared all of us to look into the mirror and not be afraid of the person that starred back at us. She realized that life was a struggle, an ongoing fight that did not let up.
Dr. Angelou gave a voice to that part of our collective selves that shied away from the light, that feeble part of our being that trembled at the very thought of exposure. Dare we consider what our lives would have been like had the gift that was Dr. Angelou not come to this world? Perish the thought….
The caged bird is free. Free from here. And we could define the "here" in many ways … though the definition we conjure may or may not have been the ones that Dr. Angelou would have put pen to paper and birthed or slayed with her prose. The "here" that seemed to have throbbed in the consciousness of Dr. Angelou has been those that call to our very personal selves. She poked at that creature and demanded that he or she get up out of that corner and live!
She dared us to live the life that will have real and lasting meaning, despite circumstance. Her life is a testament to the indomitable human spirit and its need to triumph as if it were like the gulps of air, intrinsic to our very lives.
The real question for us who may be still caged is: How will each of us remember the "caged bird" who sang of life, in all of its possibilities, despite its pain and glory?
What will be my song? What will be your song?