Archive for June 7, 2014


Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou, a poet and author who rose from poverty, segregation and the harshest of childhoods to become a force on stage, screen and the printed page, has died. She was 86.

Angelou died on Wednesday morning at her home in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, her son, Guy B. Johnson, said in a statement. The 86-year-old had been a professor of American studies at Wake Forest University since 1982.

“She lived a life as a teacher, activist, artist and human being. She was a warrior for equality, tolerance and peace,” Mr. Johnson said.

Tall and regal, with a deep, majestic voice, Angelou defied all probability and category, becoming one of the first black women to enjoy mainstream success as an author and thriving in virtually every artistic medium. The young single mother who performed at strip clubs to earn a living later wrote and recited the most popular presidential inaugural poem in history. The childhood victim of rape wrote a million-selling memoir, befriended Malcolm X, Nelson Mandela and the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., and performed on stages around the world.

An actress, singer and dancer in the 1950s and 1960s, she broke through as an author in 1970 with I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, which became standard (and occasionally censored) reading, and was the first of a multipart autobiography that continued through the decades. In 1993, she was a sensation reading her cautiously hopeful On the Pulse of the Morning at former President Bill Clinton’s first inauguration. Her confident performance openly delighted Mr. Clinton and made the poem a bestseller, if not a critical favourite. For former President George W. Bush, she read another poem, Amazing Peace, at the 2005 Christmas tree lighting ceremony at the White House.

Angelou was a mentor to Oprah Winfrey, whom she befriended when Ms. Winfrey was still a local television reporter, and often appeared on her friend’s talk show program. She mastered several languages and published not just poetry, but advice books, cookbooks and children’s stories. She wrote music, plays and screenplays, received an Emmy nomination for her acting in Roots, and never lost her passion for dance, the art she considered closest to poetry.

“The line of the dancer — If you watch (Mikhail) Baryshnikov and you see that line, that’s what the poet tries for. The poet tries for the line, the balance,” she told The Associated Press in 2008, shortly before her birthday.

After renaming herself Maya Angelou for the stage (“Maya” was a childhood nickname), she toured in ‘Porgy and Bess’ and Jean Genet’s ‘The Blacks’ and danced with Alvin Ailey. She worked as a coordinator for the civil rights group Southern Christian Leadership Conference, and lived for years in Egypt and Ghana, where she met Malcolm X and remained close to him until his assassination, in 1965. Three years later, she was helping King organize the Poor People’s March in Memphis, Tennessee, where the civil rights leader was slain on Angelou’s 40th birthday.

“Every year, on that day, Coretta and I would send each other flowers,” Angelou said of King’s widow, Coretta Scott King, who died in 2006.

Angelou was little known outside the theatrical community until I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, which might not have happened if James Baldwin hadn’t persuaded Angelou, still grieving over King’s death, to attend a party at Jules Feiffer’s house. Feiffer was so taken by Angelou that he mentioned her to Random House editor Bob Loomis, who persuaded her to write a book.

Angelou’s memoir was occasionally attacked, for seemingly opposite reasons. In a 1999 essay in Harper’s, author Francine Prose criticized Caged Bird as “manipulative” melodrama. Meanwhile, Angelou’s passages about her rape and teen pregnancy have made it a perennial on the American Library Association’s list of works that draw complaints from parents and educators.

“I thought that it was a mild book. There’s no profanity,” Angelou told the AP. “It speaks about surviving, and it really doesn’t make ogres of many people. I was shocked to find there were people who really wanted it banned, and I still believe people who are against the book have never read the book.”

Angelou appeared on several TV programs, notably the groundbreaking 1977 miniseries Roots. She was nominated for a Tony Award in 1973 for her appearance in the play Look Away.

In this November 21, 2008 photo, poet Maya Angelou smiles at an event in Washington. Ms. Angelou, author of

https://excerptsandm.wordpress.com/2013/06/24/my-picks-from-brainpickings/

https://excerptsandm.wordpress.com/2010/07/13/still-i-rise-by-maya-angelou/

Hyderabad Literary Festival 2014 – January 26, 2014 11:30 am Sunday  Creative writing workshop , Madhu Kaza …… just write – Zen @ LMK – loved it…..looking forward to another work shop by Kaza

13-Mar-2014  Women’s Poetry: Poetry Readings Curated By S.Swami  @ GZ, wanna go nxt yr too

29th march 2014 – Flea market – @ the first Twin City Theater and Cultural Festival  @ Roots

June 07, 2014  Saturday – Dramanon -“A Four Letter word”.Play @ LMK – Ganesh- vulnerable , R.Ghosh – slips into characters , Saurabh amazing !……..song at the end of the “blind blanch ” , nash – sunshine- moved ……..  lifted my low spirits

Undoing

Mindfulbalance

let go

When meditation frees us, ot does not turn us into something better or different, nor does it get us somewhere. Rather, meditation allows for an undoing of our controlling behavior, an undoing of limiting beliefs, an undoing of habitual physical tensing, an undoing of defensive armoring, and ultimately, an undoing of our identification with a small and threatened self.

Tara Brach

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Day Dream

Veraiconica's Blog

Quand le temps s'arrête / when time stops

One day people will touch and talk perhaps
easily,
And loving be natural as breathing and warm as
sunlight,
And people will untie themselves, as string is unknotted,
Unfold and yawn and stretch and spread their fingers,
Unfurl, uncurl like seaweed returned to the sea,
And work will be simple and swift
as a seagull flying,
And play will be casual and quiet
as a seagull settling,
And the clocks will stop, and no one will wonder
or care or notice,
And people will smile without reason,
Even in winter, even in the rain.

Photography Credit https://flic.kr/p/fCSbCp

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Veraiconica's Blog

Water

Once the realization is accepted
that even between the closest human beings
infinite distances continue,
a wonderful living side by side can grow,
if they succeed in loving the distance between them
which makes it possible for each to see the other whole against the sky.

Photography Credit https://flic.kr/p/nrghxS

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Zen Flash

“Every word, every image used for God
is a distortion more than a description.”
“Then how does one speak of God?”

“Through Silence.”
“Why, then, do you speak in words?”At that the Master laughed uproariously. He said,

“When I speak, you mustn’t listen to the words, my dear.
Listen to the Silence.”

~ Anthony de Mello ~

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