The Death of an Icon

“Listen to yourself and in that quietude you might hear the voice of God.” – Maya Angelou’s final tweet, May 23, 2014

Maya Angelou has died. Her autobiography I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings haunted me in college and I continued to follow her poetry and magic for the rest of her life.

Her elegance and eloquence despite much hardship made us all stronger. And her intensity inspired me to continue writing even when I didn’t want to.

I am sad to see her go.

Whenever someone of such influence passes away, I am particularly saddened — and reminded of how precious this life truly is. Yet we often live as if there is always a tomorrow.

There may not be.

It isn’t easy to be mindful every moment of every day. Life bogs us down with responsibility, pain and constant demands. In the face of all of it, it is understandable that we may lose sight of what is truly important because we are so preoccupied with just getting through the day.

Which is why it is so crucial to start each day with a reminder of your broader vision. Stating your daily proclamation really does make a difference in how you start — and spend — your day.

A morning mantra is a great way to say a blessing to the gift of another day on this Earth. And to remain centered when storms swirl around us.

Having a bad day? This too is a gift. You may not think it at the time, but that puzzle piece is just as critical to your life’s mosaic as the beautiful gems we all love to see.

May Maya rest among the angels now – her strength and beauty are a true testament to the human spirit and to the fact that we can make a difference if we listen to our calling.

Maya did. I hope with all my might to do the same.


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