Dr. Maya Angelou,
So many words come to mind when I think of you: regal, wise, compassionate, fierce, gifted, powerful, strong but even woven together in a textured tapestry, words fail to aptly describe who you were and who you remain, in your passing, to millions.
I saw you in person once, one among hundreds in an auditorium on a conservative campus, in the lone star state, Texas.
I recall being struck initially by how tall you were and then by your almost tangible presence, your grace, your dignity.
I cannot recall most of what you said but I remember how I felt in your presence and for a while after the event was over.
I see you on that stage, in my mind’s eye, even now.
Many tributes have already been expressed … some by the famous and some by others known only to those in their immediate circle. Many more will be voiced in the days and years to come. You deserve them all.
How vividly your life demonstrates that our beginnings, our past does not set our future in concrete, does not inherently dictate who we are and become.
You repeatedly taught us that we each have a voice in determining the chapters of our story and its ending.
And how well you ended, Dr. Angelou. How well you ended.
From my grateful heart, thank you.